ABB launches underground, subsea power transmission cable system

Power and automation technology group ABB successfully developed and tested a 525 kV extruded high-voltage direct current (HVDC) cable system to make renewable energy installations more efficient and cost-effective.

This application will more than double the power capacity to about 2,600 MW from 1,000 MW. It will also expand the cable’s reach to distances of 930 miles, up from less than 620 miles, while keeping transmission losses under 5 percent.

The new cable offers a 64 percent increase to more than 320 kV. The 525 kV cable system can be deployed in subsea and underground applications, making it ideal for efficient power delivery through densely populated or environmentally sensitive areas or coastal and open-sea applications.

By enabling more power over greater distances with reduced losses, ABB’s new 525 kV cable technology offers solutions for countries and utilities seeking to enable their electricity transmission systems to integrate more renewable energy being generated by distant solar and wind installations. A single pair of 525 kV extruded HVDC cables could for example transmit enough power from giant offshore wind farms in to supply two million households.

The cable system consists of cables, using a new DC cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE) insulation material developed with Borealis, a recognized industry leader, as well as termination and joints manufactured by ABB.

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