Leading power and automation technology group, ABB has successfully commissioned the HVDC converter stations to the Rio Madeira High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) link in Brazil and delivered the project to Abengoa.
Considered the longest transmission link in the world, the approximately 2,400km, 3,150 MW power connection will bring electricity from two hydropower plants in the northwest of the country to Brazil's main economic centre, São Paulo.
Claudio Facchin, head of ABB’s Power Systems business explained that the HVDC link will help integrate remotely located renewable energy and transmit clean electricity, reliably and efficiently across the massive distance with minimum losses, to millions of consumers.
Apart from the two 3,150 MW HVDC converter stations for the world record length link, ABB has also delivered an 800 MW HVDC back-to-back station that transmits power to the surrounding alternating current (AC) network in the northwest of Brazil.
These two projects comprise the fourth and fifth transmission links using HVDC technology delivered by ABB in Brazil, following the two Itaipu links, delivered in 1984 and 1987, and the two interconnections between Brazil and Argentina, delivered in 1999 and 2002.
An HVDC link minimises losses across longer distances, has a smaller footprint than traditional AC transmission systems and is also able to stabilise intermittent power supplies that might otherwise disrupt the grid, making it the technology of choice for long-distance transmission projects.
Having pioneered HVDC technology 60 years ago, ABB has delivered around 90 HVDC projects representing a total installed capacity of more than 95,000 megawatts, accounting for about half the global installed base.