Thursday, July 5, 2018

New Zealand signs ABB for North/South Island power link upgrade

Transpower New Zealand awarded a contract to ABB to upgrade the high-voltage direct current (HVDC) link which interconnects the transmission grids of the North and South islands.

New Zealand's North Island houses more than three times the population of the South Island, which besides its picturesque landscape, offers vast amounts of hydropower.

ABB noted its historic involvement in the link-- the first New Zealand link was commissioned by ABB, (erstwhile ASEA), in 1965 as one of the first HVDC transmission systems in the world. It was originally a bipolar 600 megawatt (MW) link with mercury arc valves, until the original equipment was paralleled onto a single pole in 1992, and a new thyristor-based pole was commissioned by ABB alongside it, increasing capacity to 1040 MW. The first installation was decommissioned in 2012 after 47 years in operation.


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