ABB completes HVDC system upgrade, delivering hydropower from Canada to U.S.

transmission project construction elp

ABB has completed the upgrade and refurbishment of the three high voltage direct current (HVDC) converter stations on the power transmission link between Québec, Canada and New England for the Canadian and US utilities Hydro-Québec and National Grid.

The 1,500-km link will enable populous centers like Boston to benefit from renewable sources of electricity.

This interconnection is a multi-terminal link and since entering service in the early 1990s, it has provided the highly populated areas of Montreal and Boston with clean hydropower. With a total capacity of 2,000 MW, the link can provide enough hydro-electricity for 3.8 million people, based on average US household consumption.

Therefore, a critical part of the project has been ensuring minimal power interference and enabling commercial operation to be restored swiftly. As part of this latest upgrade, ABB has replaced the link’s hardware and software with its MACH control and protection system. This ensures a continued, reliable and highly controllable power supply and enables advanced smart-grid studies for further grid optimization in a timely manner.

As a key element of the upgrade, ABB has installed its MACH control and protection system, which acts like the brain of the HVDC link. It offers a high degree of integration capability to handle control and protection functions, designed to run around the clock for decades. It also incorporates advanced fault registration and remote control functions. There are over 1,100 such systems in operation throughout the world.

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