Enemalta has just finalised repair works on the Malta-Italy interconnector cable that was damaged by a vessel anchor in a storm in March.

The anchor was caught in the interconnector when the MV Chem P tanker ran aground in Baħar ic-Caghħaq during a storm that swept the Maltese islands.

Enemalta had taken legal action over the damage.

The anchor and chains that damaged the interconnector were lifted from the bottom of the sea late last month

On Friday Enemalta said in a statement that over the past three weeks, a team of its engineers and technicians, together with a technical team from Nexans-  the company that manufactured the interconnector - carried out repair works at sea in Qalet Marku, Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq.

A robot was used to cut out over 1.5km of damaged cable.

The cast iron shells, which protect the cable, were then removed. The damaged part was then replaced by a new cable which was stored at the Delimara Power station and was loaded onto the Nexans specialised vessel in October.

The jointing was carried out aboard a specialised cable vessel, the Nexans CVL Aurora, which was only launched last year. It is the world's largest cable vessel and is equipped with several technologies to lay long cables underwater and make maintenance and repairs. It was brought to Malta at the first available opportunity.

These repair works alone cost around €25 million.

Ing Alistair Camilleri, Distribution and Projects Divisional Manager at Enemalta thanked all entities that took part in this operation and who cooperated with the company.

The 98km interconnector cable connects Malta to the European electricity grid in Sicily.

Electricity from the interconnector forms around 20% of the electricity energy mix in our country.

During the repair works, it was switched off, and supply was provided by local sources, including Enemalta’s plants which are operated in such situations.

Enemalta has already ordered over a kilometre of spare interconnector cable, to be kept in storage should any damages or faults requiring such a procedure come up.

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