Substantial modernisation takes place when the intended changes to an existing installation, based on the assessment criteria listed in the Federal Grid Code, are considered to be sufficiently major to require full or partial compliance with the Federal Grid Code and the European network codes.
If the grid user (producer or user) intends to modernise, replace or renew a power-generating module, then substantial modernisation of existing power-generating module may be required. The same applies to transmission-connected demand facilities or distribution facility, distribution systems, demand unit within a demand facility at a voltage level above 1 000 V and a closed distribution system connected at a voltage level above 1 000.
Article 4.1, a) of the European Network Codes for the connection of power-generating module and demand facilities (RfG and DCC) defines the applicability of these Codes to the power-generating module or demand facilities that are considered to be existing. This includes the substantial modernisation of a power-generating module or demand facility.
In addition, Article 161 of the Federal Grid Code defines the substantial modernisation of an existing installation as intended changes to that installation, which, on the basis of the assessment criteria listed in the Federal Grid Code, are considered to be sufficiently major to require full or partial compliance with the Federal Grid Code.
Pursuant to Article 162 of the Federal Grid Code, Elia has drawn up guidelines for defining and implementing substantial modernisation. These guidelines were extensively consulted and discussed with the market parties and submitted to CREG and Federal Public Service Economy and DG Energy for their opinion. Link to the opinion of the CREG. Elia adjusted its guidelines accordingly.
On the basis of these guidelines, Elia will analyse whether the change to the power-generating module or to the demand facility constitutes a substantial modernisation and submit an opinion on this to the competent regulator. The regulator will ultimately decide whether or not the change entails substantial modernisation. If so, the power-generating module or demand facility must comply in whole or in part with the technical requirements applicable to new units, as detailed in the Federal Grid Code and in the abovementioned European Network Codes.