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ABB launches powerful underground and subsea power transmission cable system

525 kV voltage sets world record for extruded HVDC cable technology, while extending range to enable greater integration of distant renewables and interconnections.

ABB's latest innovation will more than double the power capacity to about 2,600 MW from 1,000 MW, the company claims. It will also expand the cable's reach to distances of 1,500 kilometers -- up from less than 1,000 kilometers -- while keeping transmission losses under 5 per cent.

The new cable offers a 64 per cent increase over 320 kV, currently the highest voltage deployed for this type of technology, according to ABB. The 525kV 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. What's more, the new technology offers savings in capital and operational expenses. It also supports the development of DC grids where ABB removed a key technology hurdle with the development of the hybrid HVDC breaker.

“This major technology breakthrough will change the feasibility of renewable energy projects and play a defining role in using underground and subsea high voltage cables to integrate renewables over long distances,” said Ulrich Spiesshofer, CEO of ABB.

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Energy efficiency  •  Energy infrastructure  •  Other marine energy and hydropower