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Features Zurich, Switzerland 02-08-2021

2 min read

Hans Björklund wins prestigious IEEE award for ‘outstanding contributions’ to HVDC

Hans Björklund

In a career spanning almost 50 years, his long list of game-changing innovations includes the world’s first digital control and protection system for HVDC

Hitachi ABB Power Grids is proud to announce that Hans Björklund, Corporate Executive Engineer, has won the IEEE PES Uno Lamm High Voltage Direct Current Award “for outstanding contributions and visionary leadership in the development of advanced control and protection systems for HVDC.” 

The prize is awarded annually by the Power and Energy Society (PES) of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), the world’s largest association of technical professionals. 

HVDC is the only technology capable of transmitting huge amounts of power over very long distances with minimal electrical losses. The control and protection system is the brain of an HVDC transmission link, managing   the flow of power, stabilizing the connecting power grids, and detecting and responding to faults immediately to prevent outages.

“I am honored to be awarded this great prize, the finest in the HVDC world,” Björklund said. “I have worked with several of the previous winners and am proud to be included in their ranks.” 

“We are delighted that Hans’ immense contributions to the development of HVDC have been recognized by his peers at the IEEE,” said Niklas Persson, Managing Director of Hitachi ABB Power Grids’ Grid Integration business. “Hans has dedicated his professional life to HVDC. His work is greatly appreciated, not only in our company but by our customers and the wider power transmission community as well. His achievements are a great example of how Hitachi ABB Power Grids is powering good for a sustainable energy future with pioneering and digital technologies.”

Björklund’s career at Hitachi ABB Power Grids spans almost 50 years. He has worked on most of the world’s milestone HVDC projects and developed many world-first innovations that have improved the capacity, safety, reliability and stability of HVDC transmission. These include the first digital control and protection systems in 1976 and three generations of the MACHTM control and protection system, which safeguards the vast majority of the world’s HVDC projects.

He joined the company in 1974 after earning a master’s degree in electrical power engineering from the Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm Sweden. He is a life senior member of IEEE and is active in the International Council on Large Electric Systems (CIGRE) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). In 2014 Björklund received the Polhem Prize, Sweden’s oldest and most prestigious award for advanced technical innovation.

Uno Lamm (1904-89) was a Swedish engineer who led the commercial development of HVDC by Hitachi ABB Power Grids and pioneered the world’s first HVDC transmission link in 1954. The award is the power industry’s principal prize for lifetime achievement in HVDC innovation.