ABB, has commissioned and handed over the LitPol Link to the Lithuanian transmission system operator Litgrid. This Classic high-voltage direct current (HVDC) link which connects the power grids of Lithuania and Poland not only enables power trading between the two countries, but also strengthens and secures power supply in the region by opening up new cross-border energy sources.

The LitPol Link is part of the European Union’s Baltic Ring initiative aimed at interconnecting the grids of nine countries around the Baltic Sea i.e. Lithuania, Poland, Germany, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Estonia and Latvia. The LitPol Link now closes the Ring.

A pooling of these countries’ diverse power resources brings numerous advantages. In times when one resource is in short supply or expensive, more power can be generated and shared from more available and less expensive resources, while peak demands in different regions can be covered by shifting power through the Ring. Until now, the Lithuanian electricity system had only been connected with the grids of Latvia, Estonia and the countries to the east. The LitPol Link is ABB’s fifteenth interconnection in the Baltic region alone.

The 500 megawatts interconnection deploys ABB’s HVDC technology in a “back-to-back” solution, which enables electricity to be transmitted between the two grids. A conventional alternating current (AC) connection would not be feasible as the Lithuanian and Polish power grids are not synchronized. HVDC technology overcomes this constraint and will provide additional capabilities such as power reversal on-demand – which enables trading and power compensation to reinforce the AC grid and enhance stability. Advanced control and protection features will enhance grid reliability and efficiency, bringing benefits to the owner, operator and consumers.

“The LitPol Link helps interconnect the Baltic region, improving power security and grid reliability while paving the way for power trading” said Patrick Fragman, Managing Director of ABB’s Grid Systems business, part of the company’s Power Grids division. ”The completion of this link reinforces our focus on efficient project execution as well as on our leading technologies to deliver enhanced customer value, in line with our Next Level strategy.”

For the LitPol Link, ABB was responsible for the design, engineering, supply, installation and commissioning of the converter station, including high-voltage equipment, power transformers, thyristor valves. The solution also incorporates the leading-edge MACH (Modular Advanced Control for HVDC) control system – the most widely deployed control technology in the world for HVDC and FACTS (Flexible Alternating Current Transmission Systems).

ABB pioneered HVDC technology more than 60 years ago and has been awarded over 110 HVDC projects so far, representing a total installed capacity of more than 120,000 megawatts and accounting for around half the global installed base. ABB remains at the forefront of HVDC innovation and is uniquely positioned in the industry with in-house manufacturing capability for all key components of HVDC systems.