NordLink enters operational phase

In: Interconnectors
NordLink partners TenneT, Statnett and KfW have now taken over the 1400 MW NordLink high-voltage direct current (HVDC) interconnector between Norway and Germany. The takeover from converter manufacturer Hitachi ABB Power Grids signifies the transition from the trial to the operational phase.

NordLink was developed by Norwegian TSO Statnett and DC Nordseekabel, each with 50% ownership. DC Nordseekabel is equally owned by TenneT and the German promotional bank KfW, and was responsible for the construction of the German part of the project. Statnett was responsible for construction in Norway.

The interconnector will have total length of 623 kilometres, including 516 kilometres of subsea cable in the North Sea waters of Norway, Denmark and Germany. In addition, there are 53 kilometres of overhead line in Norway and a 54-kilometre land cable route on the German side.

Due to the length of the route and the large transmission capacity, direct current is used to reduce transmission losses. Both cables (positive and negative poles) are connected to converter stations at each end. The converter stations are located in Wilster (Germany), and Tonstad (Norway). At these locations, the current will be converted from direct to three-phase electric power (or vice versa, depending on the transmission direction) and fed into the German or Norwegian three-phase electric power transmission grid to supply homes and businesses with green electricity.

Hitachi ABB Power Grids was responsible for the HVDC technology in the converter stations in Norway and Germany. Nexans and NKT produced and supplied the submarine and underground cables for the project.

Tim Meyerjürgens, TenneT COO says: “With NordLink, we have successfully commissioned a major international flagship project of the European energy transition and reliably integrated it into the electricity market. Building on a trusted partnership we delivered the "green cable" within the specified expectations in time, budget and quality. As world's leading operator of high-voltage direct current connections, we will continue to contribute this know-how to the planning and construction of further grid expansion to drive the energy transition.”

"We are very proud to have built the world's longest subsea electrical interconnector that runs between Tonstad in Sirdal municipality and Wilster in Germany. We and our German partners, the system operator TenneT and the investment bank KfW, have achieved this, even in challenging times with the corona. The project is one of the largest projects in Statnett's history, and we have seen impressive work and engineering achievements in this project. It has been a privilege to follow NordLink through the project phase",
says Håkon Borgen, Executive Vice President Technology and Development at Statnett.

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