ABB gets $640m India transmission deal to integrate wind

India’s national electricity grid operator, Power Grid Corporation (Powergrid) of India, has brought in ABB to undertake construction of a 6GW transmission trunkline to transport electricity to some 80 million people.

The 1,830km-long Raigarh-Pugalur ultra-high-voltage direct current (UHVDC) system will connect Raigarh in Central India to Pugalur in the southern state of Tamil Nadu with a two-way 800kV link that will integrate thermal and wind energy sources.

“Delivering reliable electricity to India’s energy demand centres is a top priority for the Indian government to support the country’s impressive growth momentum,” says ABB chief executive Ulrich Spiesshofer. “ABB is strongly committed to India for more than a century and with this new long distance transmission link we are delivering the benefits from the Energy Revolution to the country, building on the strength of our strong local manufacturing footprint.” 

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The mega-project builds on ABB’s long track record with HVDC lines in India, where it introduced the technology over 25 years ago with the Vindhyachal project. Raigarh-Pugalur is ABB’s sixth HVDC project in the country and its second UHVDC installation, following the multi-terminal Northeast Agra link, which has been already partially energized and is in the final phase of completion.

ABB’s $640m turnkey deal encompasses design, engineering, supply, installation and commissioning. Major equipment supplies include the complete UHVDC stations, including transformers, converter valves, cooling systems, as well as control and protection technology.

“As part of our Next Level Strategy, we are committed to delivering cutting-edge technologies like HVDC to integrate renewables and transmit power reliably and efficiently, providing vital access to electricity and making a real difference to people’s lives,” adds Claudio Facchin, president of ABB’s Power Grids division.

The project, which has a total value of over $840m, the balance of which will be executed by ABB consortium partner Bharat Heavy Electricals, is slated to be completed in 2019.