TenneT and partners Statnett and KfW have taken over the NordLink high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission system between Norway and Germany, marking the end of the interconnector’s trial operation.

Photo of Nordlink cable installation (Courtesy of TenneT)
Nordlink cable installation (Courtesy of TenneT)

The takeover from converter manufacturer Hitachi ABB Power Grids signifies the successful transition from the trial to the operational phase.

NordLink, known also as the ‘green cable’, for exchanging German wind energy with Norwegian hydropower is a system of two optimally complementary systems, according to partners.

Consisting of 623 km long HVDC transmission system, with 516 km submarine cable, and 1,400MW of capacity, the NordLink is expected to supply around 3.6 million households with climate-neutral energy.

According to partners, the official inauguration of NordLink will take place on 27 May 2021.

Tim Meyerjürgens, TenneT COO, said: “With NordLink, we have successfully commissioned a major international flagship project of the European energy transition and reliably integrated it into the electricity market. Building on a trusted partnership we delivered the ‘green cable’ within the specified expectations in time, budget and quality”.

Image showing NordLink map (Courtesy of Statnett)
NordLink map (Courtesy of Statnett)

Håkon Borgen, executive vice president of technology and development at Statnett, said: “We are very proud to have built the world’s longest subsea electrical interconnector that runs between Tonstad in Sirdal municipality and Wilster in Germany. We and our German partners, the system operator TenneT and the investment bank KfW, have achieved this, even in challenging times with the corona.

The project is one of the largest projects in Statnett’s history, and we have seen impressive work and engineering achievements in this project. It has been a privilege to follow NordLink through the project phase”.

“NordLink is now in the operation phase – this is good news for the European energy transition”, said Markus Scheer, member of the management board of KfW IPEX-Bank. “By connecting the Norwegian and the German energy markets we can achieve supply security and stable energy prices while increasing the share of renewables in the energy mix”.

Hitachi ABB Power Grids was responsible for the HVDC technology in the converter stations in Norway and Germany, which is expected to ensure efficient power exchange between the countries for the next 40 years.

Nexans and NKT produced and supplied the submarine and underground cables for the project.

Trial operation of NordLink was launched on 9 December 2020, making the cable link between Norway and Germany available to the electricity market for the first time. Construction work began in 2016.

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