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Strait of Belle Isle Marine Cable Crossing

To transmit power generated at Muskrat Falls to the island of Newfoundland, a 30 km underwater cable crossing was constructed across the Strait of Belle Isle from Forteau Point, Labrador to Shoal Cove, on the island of Newfoundland.


Site clearing and development began in Forteau and Shoal Cove in 2013. Following that work, horizontal directional drilling (HDD) activity was carried out, with drill rigs and other equipment operating on both sides of the Straits to create boreholes for the submarine cables. HDD activities were completed in August 2014. In 2016, a cable installation vessel began installing the three transmission cables on the sea floor. Rock berms were then placed over each cable by a rock-laying vessel, to protect the cables from marine vessel traffic and fishing activity. Transmission compounds were also be constructed in Forteau and Shoal Cove.

The Strait of Belle Isle Marine Cable Crossing made history during 2016 with the first ever connection between Labrador and the island. Several world records were reached on this project. The pull-in (as it is referred by industry) broke the current world record for the longest high voltage direct current cable landfall pull-in in the world. Another record was reached when 540,000 tonnes of locally quarried rock was installed over 80 km to create the protective berm over the three subsea cables. To date, this is the largest subsea rock installation campaign that has been performed in a single campaign in NL, and the fastest known fall pipe vessel rock installation campaign of this quantity.