New T&D conductor company attracts $25M from major utility investment funds

TS Conductor stringing on H-frame poles. Credit: TS Conductor.

TS Conductor Corp., a company producing high-efficiency conductors for electricity grids, announced that Breakthrough Energy Ventures, National Grid Partners and a subsidiary of NextEra Energy have joined Talkot and Hervé Touati in its oversubscribed Series A financing, for a total $25 million in funding. The new capital will be used to build the company’s first manufacturing plant in the United States.

“Our mission is to make electricity networks greener. TS achieves that through a combination of energy efficiency and faster and cheaper renewable integration,” said Dr. Jason Huang, CEO at TS Conductor Corp.

Overhead conductor technology used by transmission and distribution grid operators has not materially changed since the emergence of Aluminum Core Steel Reinforced (ACSR) cables in 1908. ACSR still today represents over 95 percent of the utility cables deployed across the world. TS Conductor says it creates a new class of conductors that is based on a combination of carbon composite and aluminum encapsulation of the composite core. The conductors can be installed with the same tools and operating procedures as ACSR cables. And they are compatible with industry standard field practice and can be used for:

  • Line reconductoring, allowing for the doubling of capacity of an existing line without having to change or retrofit any structures.
  • Energy efficiency upgrades, reducing technical line losses by half without having to change or retrofit any structures.
  • Insulation upgrades of distribution networks, reducing forest fire risks without having to change the poles or towers.
  • Building new lines with lower structure costs and/or better characteristics (in capacity, efficiency, insulation).

UN climate targets create the need for new cable technologies that can reduce electricity network losses and accelerate the connection of wind and solar farms, which is one of the major bottlenecks of renewable energy expansion, according to TS Conductor. Network losses amount to approximately 2000 TWh annually, or 6.7 times the electricity consumption of the U.K.

“Transmission is fundamentally important to our climate mission, yet it has seen limited innovation over the years. It is rare to find a transmission technology like TS Conductor with as much potential in terms of deployability, cost and efficiency,” said Carmichael Roberts, Breakthrough Energy Ventures.

“National Grid has committed to reducing our greenhouse gas emissions 90 percent by 2040 and to net zero by 2050, and to accelerating the incorporation of wind, solar and battery storage in our grids in the UK and North America,” said Lisa Lambert, Chief Technology and Innovation Officer of National Grid and the President and Founder of National Grid Partners. “There are few solutions enabling grid operators to reduce their electricity consumption, and TS Conductor is the most impressive solution I have encountered so far to decarbonize electricity grids. Their product, when combined with a top-notch management team, positions TS Conductor to be a leader in the market.”


Note: A session at DISTRIBUTECH Connect will cover transmission transformation. Connect takes place on January 25, 2022 in Dallas. Qualified utility representatives attend for free. Learn more.


TS Conductor was founded in 2018 by Rulong Chen, James Huang and Jason Huang, based on James Huang’s patented conductor design. The company is also part of the first cohort of Third Derivative. Founded by Rocky Mountain Institute and New Energy Nexus, Third Derivative is a global climate technology startup accelerator with the mission of building an inclusive ecosystem that rapidly finds, funds and scales climate tech innovation.

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Jennifer Runyon is a Senior Content Director at Clarion Energy, writing, editing and posting content on POWERGRID International and planning conference sessions for DISTRIBUTECH's live and virtual events. She is the conference advisory committee chair for DISTRIBUTECH International. You can reach her at Jennifer.Runyon@ClarionEvents.com.

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