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Overview Garabi 1 and 2
Customer Success Story

Brazil-Argentina HVDC Interconnection

The Hitachi Energy HVDC CCC concept made it possible to avoid building a synchronous compensator plant at Garabi

The Argentina - Brazil HVDC interconnection, owned by Cien/Endesa Group, demonstrates the advantages of the modular HVDC back-to-back interconnection concept in a project designed to encourage cross-border energy trading between the two countries.

The transmission system comprises 490 km of 500 kV AC overhead lines between the two substations of Rincón de Santa Maria in northern Argentina and Itá in southern Brazil, and an HVDC converter station at Garabi in Brazil, near the border.

Argentina's power system operates at 50 Hz, and Brazil's operates at 60 Hz. The asynchronous interconnection is through HVDC frequency converters in a back-to-back configuration at Garabi.

Hitachi Energy's capacitor commutated converter (CCC)-type HVDC converter technology made it possible to avoid building a synchronous compensator plant at Garabi. Each of the two 1,100 MW phases of the Garabi back-to-back station is divided into two blocks of 550 MW each. The first phase went into commercial operation in 2000, the second phase in 2002.

A CCC/ConTune combination in the converters enables secure operation at low short circuit levels, improving reactive power control and providing even and continuous voltage and power flow control. The converter station's modular construction concept simplifies civil design and ensures an environmentally acceptable solution and shorter delivery time.

Each line from Garabi to Itá in Brazil is 354 km long, a challenge for a converter station that guarantees delivery of 1,000 MW into a rather weak point of the grid.

This cross-border system enables both countries to utilize electricity resources more efficiently and cost-effectively, increasing system reliability and enabling secondary energy trades. The time schedule for completion of the first phase was only 22 months, a significant challenge for a project of this magnitude.

Garabi HVDC converter station upgrade

The Garabi HVDC converter station will be upgraded with advanced MACH™ control and protection system, extending the life of the world’s most powerful system of its kind. The latest MACH™ technology from Hitachi Energy provides unequaled calculation capacity and enables a high degree of integration and handling for all control and protection functions. 

This HVDC converter station is a back-to-back system which utilizes the sophisticated, digital controllability of an HVDC system to precisely manage the flow and properties of the electricity supply, providing many benefits for grid control and stability.

Main data
Commissioning year: Second phase: 2002
First phase: 2000
Garabi station upgrade: 2026
Configuration: Back-to-back
Power transmitted: 2,200 MW
Application: Interconnecting grids; Upgrades