ABB HVDC Technology Aids Offshore Wind Power Transmission

Press Release
Monday, April 15, 2013

World’s most powerful HVDC Light® sets new record voltage level of ±320 kV- more than 50 per cent higher than existing record.

The HVDC Light converter station was energized at the Dörpen West substation in northern Germany, for the Dutch-German transmission system operator, TenneT. This station is the receiving end of the DolWin1 transmission link, which will integrate 800 MW of offshore wind power generated in the North Sea into the European transmission system and will operate at the new record voltage level of +/-320 kilovolts (kV).

HVDC Light is a manifestation of HVDC that helps to address the needs of underground and subsea transmission and ABB leads the way in this technology, having delivered more than 20 such converter stations.

The advance was made possible by developments in converter technology, a new valve concept, enhanced semiconductor performance and advanced control systems. It will provide further impetus to the evolution of multi-terminal systems and interconnected HVDC grids, where ABB recently removed a major technology stumbling block with the announcement of its hybrid HVDC breaker development.

HVDC Light continues to be a preferred solution for long-distance underground and underwater power links and interconnections. This technology is increasingly being deployed across a range of applications including integration of renewable energies from land-based and offshore wind farms, mainland power supply to islands and offshore oil and gas platforms, city center in-feeds where space is a major constraint and cross-border interconnections that often connect across the seas. The ability of this technology to meet grid code compliance ensures robust network connections regardless of application.

“This latest achievement reinforces our leading position in HVDC transmission and our commitment to the ongoing development of this key technology,” said Hanspeter Faessler, Head of ABB’s Grid Systems business, a part of the company’s Power Systems division. “ABB is uniquely positioned in this sector with manufacturing capability for converters, cables and semiconductors - the major HVDC components.”

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