Prysmian, Hitachi Energy sign for UK’s longest HVDC cable

Prysmian, Hitachi Energy sign for UK’s longest HVDC cable

Business news |
By Nick Flaherty

Prysmian in Italy and Hitachi Energy in Switzerland have signed a deal for the UK’s longest high voltage DC cable.

Eastern Green Link 2 (EGL2) is a 525kV, 2GW HVDC subsea transmission cable from Peterhead in Scotland to Drax in England delivered as a joint venture by National Grid and SSEN Transmission. 

The joint venture has signed contracts this week with the Prysmian Group to supply around 1,000km of cable for the project and with Hitachi Energy and BAM for the supply of converter stations at either end of the subsea cable. The subsea HVDC cable system is approximately 436km in length with new converter stations at either end to connect it into the existing transmission network infrastructure.

This will be the longest HVDC cable in the UK and the UK’s single largest electricity transmission project ever, providing enough electricity to power 2 million UK homes. 

Prysmian has confirmed it has the capability to deliver the project with its manufacturing facilities for the production of the HVDC cable and its cable laying vessels for the installation in 2029

Hitachi Energy is partnering with BAM to provide the engineering works and technology for the HVDC converter stations which form the terminals for the HVDC cable and convert direct current to the alternating current used in the onshore transmission network.

“Getting the contract signed with Hitachi Energy and BAM for delivery of the convertor stations is another big step in delivering EGL2. The convertor stations at either end of the cable will play a crucial role in making the power transported by this HVDC link onto the onshore transmission network quicker,” said SSEN Transmission’s Ricky Saez, the EGL2 Project Director.

“Signing Hitachi Energy and BAM will allow that technology to improve the network and flow of greener energy. Likewise signing the cable contract with Prysmian is a hugely important step too, particularly given global supply chain constraints in HVDC cabling – the cable being the crucial link between both converters.”

“Signing contracts with Hitachi Energy, BAM and Prysmian marks another important milestone for the EGL2 project and our supply chain as we begin to deliver the largest electricity transmission project in the UK. We look forward to working with them closely as this vital new network infrastructure progresses,” said Neil Lyons, Project Director for National Grid.

“We are very proud to have the opportunity to play our role in the development of such a strategic infrastructure for UK, by making available our state-of-the-art cable technology. Once completed, the electrical ‘superhighway’ cable link will unlock the rich renewable energy capacity of Scotland and significantly increase the UK’s capacity to deliver clean energy for around two million homes in the UK,” said Hakan Ozmen, EVP Transmission BU at Prysmian.

“Electricity will be the backbone of the entire energy system. Our pioneering HVDC technology will ensure that this electricity will reliably and efficiently get where it’s needed most,” said Niklas Persson, Managing Director at Hitachi Energy’s Grid Integration business. 

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