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​​​What is a Substation?

​​​​​​​​​Substations are important components of the electrical infrastructure required to keep reliable electricity available for customers.

Substations consist of high voltage electrical e​quipment like transformers, switchgear, circuit breakers and associated devices.

  • Transformers step down the high voltage electricity coming in on the transmission lines, to a much lower voltage suitable to send out on distribution wires.
  • Circuit Switches direct the flow of electricity, like the switches that turn the lights on and off in your home.
  • Breakers interrupt the flow of electricity when unexpected surges or faults occur, in order to protect the system from damage -- like the breakers in the main service panel of your home.
  • Capacitors improve the quality of the electricity supply to customers, in two important ways: they smooth out voltage depressions caused by increased loads, and they “filter out” voltage distortions.

Why do we have Substations?

The purpose of a substation is to ‘step down’ high voltage electricity from the transmission system to lower voltage electricity so it can be easily supplied to homes and businesses through our distribution lines.

ENMAX Power Corporation operates 40 high voltage electrical substations and three lower voltage distribution substations, located in all parts of Calgary and our surrounding service area. Managing the environmental aspects of our substations is an important part of environmental stewardship at ENMAX Power.

As the City of Calgary continues to grow, so does the need for electricity. As a result, ENMAX Power is proposing to build and operate new substations in Calgary.

Questions and answers



Customers are free to purchase natural gas services or electricity services from a retailer of their choice. For a list of retailers, visit ucahelps.alberta.ca or call 310-4822 (toll free in Alberta).

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