Hitachi Energy has maintained a presence serving the New Zealand market since the 1930’s and employs around 50 people conducting its sales and service operations from 4 locations nationwide: Auckland, Hamilton, New Plymouth, and Christchurch.
Our history dates back to the late 1800’s when electrical engineering companies, ASEA and BBC (Brown Boveri & Cie), were formed during Europe’s industrial revolution. After introducing electrical power transmission, rail and industrial technologies, these two pioneering brands merged in 1988 to create ABB.
In 2020, Hitachi and ABB's Hitachi Energy’s business came together in a joint venture to create a new global leader in pioneering and digital technologies. As individual companies, both had been innovating and improving technology for over a century. Together, as Hitachi Energy, we bring forward and build on this remarkable heritage to tackle today's challenges facing business and society. Trusted as a partner of choice to the industry, we co-create best-in-class solutions that deliver on the promise of a sustainable energy future.
HVDC History in New Zealand
ASEA’s high-voltage direct current (HVDC) pioneering technology came to New Zealand. It was a key part of he ±250kV, 600 MW HVDC Interisland Link between Benmore (in the South Island) and Haywards (in the North Island) and was commissioned in 1965. It was originally a bipolar 600-megawatt (MW) link with mercury arc valves. This was just the third link of its kind in the world operating at voltage and current levels significantly higher than previously been attempted.
In 1992, the national grid owner, Transpower, further upgraded the original HVDC link so that it became paralleled onto a single pole (Pole 2). ABB was contracted to build the new converter stations for this project and also supplied and laid the new submarine cables across the Cook Strait. The new thyristor-based HVDC Pole 2 was commissioned and operated alongside the ASEA link, increasing capacity to 1040 MW. The original link was decommissioned in 2012 after 47 years in operation.
In 2018, Transpower upgraded its Pole 2 HVDC link with the latest control system technology. ABB was contracted to provide the system and commission the new control system in March 2020.
Hitachi Energy retains the HVDC technology as a core part of its world-class solutions that deliver on the promise of a sustainable energy future.