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HVDC LIGHT TECHNOLOGY

ABSTRACT

Transmitting power at high voltage and in DC form instead of AC is a new technology proven to be economic and simple in operation which is HVDC transmission. The HVDC High Voltage Direct C!rrent" technology is !sed to transmit electricity over long distances by overhead transmission lines or s!bmarine cables. #t is also !sed to interconnect separate power systems. A f!rther development in this technology is HVDC light where HVDC light converters are !sed for faster and efficient conversion of power. HVDC $ight is a f!ndamentally new power transmission technology developed recently. #t is partic!larly s!itable for medi!m to small%scale power transmission applications. This new transmission and distrib!tion technology& HVDC $ight provides an important role

'to today(s re)!irements on o!r networ* systems and opens !p new opport!nities for both investors and environmentalist ali*e. HVDC light technology for transmission of electric power is introd!ced in this paper. #ts feat!res& advantages and applications are pointed o!t. HVDC cables& their design& !nder gro!nd laying & their advantages and applications are also added. The paper also gives a note on the advantages of HDVC light cables over AC !ndergro!nd cables.

#+TR,D-CT#,+.
Competition in the electricity power ind!stry& co!pled with contin!ed load growth re)!ires that the e/isting transmission system assets are !tilised more effectively and some times closer to their technical limits. As the e/isting AC lines become loaded closer to their thermal capacity with increasing losses and red!ced power )!ality we face the ris* of declining networ* stability. ,ne sol!tion wo!ld be to simply b!ild new& more powerf!l AC lines. B!t& it is getting increasingly diffic!lt to obtain permits to b!ild new high voltage ,verhead transmission lines& the right%of%way occ!pies val!able land. ,verhead lines change the landscape& ca!ses p!blic resentment close to overhead lines. There are many e/amples today of p!blic agitation against overhead power lines and the call for them to be b!ried. 2edia reports which lin* living close to power lines with higher cancer ris*s and le!*aemia in children don(t help the sit!ation. ,n the other hand laying an !ndergro!nd cable is an easier process than b!ilding an overhead line. A cable doesn3t change the landscape and it doesn3t need a wide right%of%way. Cables rarely meet with p!blic opposition. There are technical constraints& which limit the distance of traditional AC !ndergro!nd cables to aro!nd 45*m. And& even tho!gh the cost of laying AC cables is rapidly red!cing it still costs more than e)!ivalent over head lines . C!rrently there is little incentive for p!tting high voltage lines !ndergro!nd partic!larly when the +etwor* Service provider is predominantly driven by cost to provide performance%based transmission services at a competitive price. So what is the sol!tion6 HVDC $ight technology has the potential to play an important role in achieving this sol!tion. #t provides improved power )!ality and power flow control as well as #ntrod!cing e/tr!ded DC%cables which have no technical limit to distance which can be installed& and can provide an alternative to overhead lines partic!larly when the total capital and environmental costs are considered. and is often met by political resistance. 0eople are increasingly concerned abo!t the possible health ha1ards of living

#n A!stralia& at Direct $in* and 2!rraylin* & we have two s!ch e/amples where HVDC $ight technology with !ndergro!nd DC%cables has been implemented in a competitive& mar*et%oriented networ* service.

HVDC $ight Technology.


As its name implies& HVDC $ight is a high voltage& direct c!rrent transmission technology and is well s!ited to meet the demands of competitive power mar*et for transmission !p to 77528 and for DC voltage in the 9 ':5*V range. Traditional HVDC& or if yo! li*e HVDC Heavy& is designed for high voltage& direct c!rrent transmission above 75528 and for DC voltage !p to 9 ;55*V. HVDC $ight design is based on mod!lar concept b!ild !p from standardised designs with compact transportable mod!les& which are factory assembled and pre%tested to provide short delivery and a fast response to the competitive mar*et demands. These standardised mod!lar designs allow for delivery times as short as '< months. #t consists of two AC to DC converter stations and a pair of !ndergro!nd cables interconnecting

each converter station.

=ig. <& $ayo!t of a 77528 HVDC $ight converter station The converter stations are designed to be !nmanned and virt!ally maintenance%free. ,peration can be carried o!t remotely or a!tomatically based on the re)!irements of the +etwor* Service contract. The AC to DC converters employ the latest in power semicond!ctor technology& the #>BT #ns!lated >ate Bipolar Transistor". This technology provides the HVDC $ight converter with a switching speed <? times faster than a traditional HVDC& thyristor controlled converter. This fast control ma*es it possible to create any phase angle or amplit!de which can be done almost instantaneo!sly providing independent control of both active and reactive power. =rom a system point of view it acts as a motor or a generator witho!t mass. 8hile the transmitted active power is *ept constant the HVDC $ight converter can

a!tomatically control the voltage of the connected AC networ* by compensating the generation and cons!mption of reactive power within the capacity of its rating.#n the presence of a fa!lt on the e/isting AC system the HVDC $ight converter can rapidly assist with voltage s!pport to avoid severe dist!rbances in the local grid. The response time for a change in voltage can be as )!ic* as :5ms. 8ith this speed of response HVDC $ight will be able to control transients !p to aro!nd 7H1& thereby helping to *eep the AC b!s voltage constant. HDVC light is a transmission system incl!ding cables& converters& transformers &etc.

Technical =eat!res.
Advantageo!s for long distance cable transmission. 0ower reversal witho!t interr!ption. Can start !p dead A.C networ*. +o increase of short circ!it c!rrent. @)!al or longer service life than A$0@ AC cables.

#n s!mmary& HVDC $ight combines the operational feat!res of traditional HVDC

converters with those of static var compensators to provide new levels of performance in terms of power )!ality d!ring both steady state and transient operation.

HVDC $ight Cable.


The HVDC $ight cable is a new design triple e/tr!ded& polymeric ins!lated DC% cable& which has been s!ccessf!lly type tested to':5*V DC& following a comprehensive R B D program. #t is a new lightweight cable similar in appearance and characteristics to a standard AC& A$0@ cable e/cept that the problem associated with space charges which brea*down the ins!lation when !sing AC& A$0@ cables on DC has been overcome with this new design. DC !ndergro!nd cables provide significant advantages& compared with overhead power lines. The cable system is complete with cables& accessories and installation services .The cables are operated in bipolar mode. ,ne cable with positive polarity and one cable with negative polarity. The cables have polymeric ins!lating material which is very strong and rob!st. This strength and fle/ibility ma*e the HDVC light cables perfect for severe installation conditions. The s!b marine cables can be laid in deeper waters and on ro!gh bottoms. The ro!gh cables can be installed less costly with plo!ghing techni)!e. HDVC cables can now also go overhead with Aerial cables.

@nvironmentally friendly.
2agnetic fields are eliminated since HVDC light cables are laid in pairs with anti% parallel dc c!rrents. Ris* of oil spill& as in paper%oil%ins!lated cables& is eliminated.

Advantages.
Red!ced environmental impact& an !ndergro!nd cable has no vis!al impact on the landscape. ,nce it3s installed the cable ro!te can be replanted with +ative
vegetation.

=aster and easier iss!e of permits !sing DC !ndergro!nd cables. -ndergro!nd cables rarely meet with p!blic opposition and often receive political s!pport. The system reliability is enhanced with red!ced ris* of damage from nat!ral ca!ses s!ch as storms& wind& earth)!a*es and fire. Co! simply b!ry it and forget it.

,peration and maintenance costs of the transmission easement are virt!ally eliminated as there is no need for long term contracts to maintain the easement with s!itable access roads& thermographic chec*s of cond!ctors Doints& ins!lator replacements& constant trimming and removal of regrowth vegetation and p!blic safety and sec!rity.

The width of the corridor to install the !ndergro!nd cable can be as narrow as E metres& which will give greater fle/ibility with the selection of a transmission ro!te.

There are considerable cost savings to the comm!nity in terms of amenity& property val!es and possible health ris*s. The installation of a DC cable has no environmental impact& the land can contin!e to be !sed and there is virt!ally no magnetic radiation associated with the bi%polar DC cable.

Compared with AC underground cables the HVDC Light cable also has some significant advantages to be considered :
DC cables re)!ire only two cables between each converter station. -nli*e AC cables& which generally have a technical limit of aro!nd '55*m d!e to reactive power and losses& DC%cables have no technical limit to distance. DC cables can carry !p to :5F more power than the e)!ivalent AC cable. There is no need to install gro!ps of cables to achieve the re)!ired power rating. As there is no need to maintain wide distances between gro!ps of cables& DC cables can be plo!ghed direct in the gro!nd or laid together in narrow trenches. DC cables have a longer life e/pectancy than AC cables d!e to its lower operational stress level of aro!nd <5*VGmm. #n s!mmary& when considering the cost of installing an HVDC $ight !ndergro!nd transmission it is important to consider the total life cost benefits and not D!st the initial !p front capital costs.

Applications.

HVDC $ight technology has been well proven since the first s!ccessf!l pilot installation in 2arch 'H?? with a n!mber of commercial proDects !nderta*en and in operation. Applications to date incl!de connecting wind power generation to the grid. This incl!des >otland& off the Swedish mainland& transmitting :528 bac* onto the grid. The lin* has been transmitting power since +ovember 'HHH. 8ind generation is often placed in remote locations where the grid is wea* and short circ!it power capability is )!ite low. They often re)!ire e/pansion within a few years and wind generators absorb reactive power from the grid for magnetisation

Advantages
=le/ibility to be e/panded $imits the short circ!it power contrib!tion S!pplies reactive power to wind generator& independently to active power it receives. A meshed DC grid can be b!ilt which connects the wind farms

Another application for HVDC $ight is interconnecting different +etwor*s. #n this application the advantages provided incl!de.
The flow of energy over the lin* can be precisely defined and controlled& thereby capacity rights for f!lly commercial networ* are readily defined. The converter stations at each end can act independently of each other to provide ancillary& reactive power s!pport into the networ*. -ndergro!nd cables facilitate the iss!ing of permits. -nli*e >overnment -tilities there are no rights of ac)!isition for a private developer. Rapid constr!ction of the HVDC $ight allows a fast response to mar*et conditions of mar*et%driven networ* services. The cable ro!te re)!ires no easements over private land for installation& and the overall impact on vegetation is absol!te minim!m.,nce the cable is installed the cable ro!te can be replanted with native vegetation providing a net gain in native vegetation.

Typical Layout Of HVDC SubStation:

Two identical parallel systems each feed one drive system on the platform from the e/isting '7<*v networ* thro!gh a converter station and a ?5*m long HVDC $ight s!b sea cable.

Concl!sions.
HVDC $ight is a new technology that has been specifically developed to match the re)!irements of the new competitive electricity mar*ets. #t provides the ability to connect renewable generation to the AC grid. #t allows !s to s!pply power to remote locations and islands replacing local diesel generation. #t is an ideal vehicle for privately f!nded developers to lin* different regions and trade energy. The technical merits are that by virt!e of its standardised prefabricated mod!lar constr!ction which lead to short delivery times& it is relocatable and can be e/panded to meet growing demand. 2oreover& a *ey advantage is that it provides acc!rate control of the transmitted active power and independent control of the reactive power in the connected AC networ*s. A pair of lightweight DC cables can be laid direct in the gro!nd in a cost%effective way which is comparable to or less than a corresponding total life cycle cost of AC overhead line. As opposed to an overhead line& an !ndergro!nd cable pair has no vis!al impact on the landscape. -s!ally it(s m!ch easier to obtain permission and p!blic approval for an !ndergro!nd cable transmission compared with an overhead line& especially in residential areas. =or these reasons HVDC $ight provides an important role as a b!siness concept and opens !p new opport!nities for both investors and environmentalist.

References.
'. ABB prod!cts I hvdc and hvdc light <. www.vattenfall.hvdcJeng.pdf 7.www.abb.com E.www.pepei.pennnet.com :.www.mena.abb.com ;.www.newmaterials.com