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hitachi abb power grids hvdc nordlink interconnectors

NordLink

The NordLink interconnector links the power grids in Norway and Germany for the first time, and enables the integration and exchange of renewable wind, solar and hydro power between these two countries. This link also supports the vision of a strong European power network in which grid electricity is increasingly generated by renewables. By allowing surplus wind and solar power produced in Germany to be transmitted to Norway, and hydroelectric power to be transmitted in the opposite direction it increases energy security in both countries and supports the integration of renewable energy into both countries' grids.  

NordLink is the world’s first HVDC Light® bi-pole installation to perform at a record level of 525-kilovolt (kV) and 1,400 megawatt (MW), nearly doubling the power transmission capacity compared with earlier systems and improving overall reliability and availability in the grid.

NordLink is not only the world’s longest VSC cable connector at 623 km, but also Europe’s longest HVDC power grid interconnection, and the first interconnection to link the Norwegian and German power grids. 

The delivery has included the design, engineering, supply and commissioning of two 1,400 MW ±525 kV converter stations, using leading Voltage Sourced Converter (VSC) technology, called HVDC Light®, introduced to the market by Hitachi Energy in the 1990’s. One HVDC converter station is situated near Tonstad in southern Norway and the other near Wilster in northern Germany.

Hitachi Energy was awarded the project in 2015 by a consortium comprising Statnett, Norway’s state-run electricity transmission and distribution utility; the state-run electricity transmission operator TenneT in the Netherlands; and the KfW (Kreditanstalt ür Wiederaufbau) development bank in Germany. 

Map for NordLink project, from Tonstad in Norway to Wilster in Germany
Illustrated overview for NordLink project
Main data
Commissioning year: 2020
Power rating: 1,400 MW
No of circuits 2
AC Voltage: 400 kV (Tonstad, Norway)
380 kV (Wilster, Germany) 
DC Voltage: ±525 kV
Length of DC submarine cables: 2 x 516 km,
whereof Hitachi Energy scope: 2 x 154 km
Length of DC land cables 2 x 54 km, all Hitachi Energy scope
Length of overhead line 53 km
Main reason for choosing HVDC Light®: Long submarine cable distance, stabilizing features
Application: Interconnecting grids