T&D World Magazine

Multi-Country Shared Energy System Inaugurated in the Gulf

AREVA’s Transmission and Distribution division congratulates the Gulf Cooperation Council International Authority (GCCIA) on the successful inauguration of its North Grid system. This project brings state-of-the-art High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) and Energy Management Systems (EMS) to the Gulf Region, in order to interconnect the power grids of the Gulf Cooperative Council member countries, marking a major milestone in the development of the Region.

The Phase one project has interconnected the northern countries of Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Qatar, with the interconnection of United Arab Emirates and Oman to follow later during Phase two and Phase three projects.

AREVA T&D designed and built the 3-pole 1800-MW 400-kV HVDC Al Fadhili converter station in Saudi Arabia, and an integrated automation solution including e-terra Energy Management Systems (EMS) and substation MiCOM protection relays and PACiS control system for the entire six-country GCCIA network.

Essential to this system is the Control Center, located in Ghunan, Saudi Arabia, which manages the flow of energy not only to the new substations built for Phase one, but also manages the energy interconnection and exchange throughout each GCC member country.

The Al Fadhili HVDC converter station is the transmission connection that makes it possible for Saudi Arabia to share energy with the other member countries, despite asynchronous voltage levels (Saudi Arabia’s transmission system uses 380 kV 60 Hz, while the other countries use 400 kV and 50 Hz).

This mega-project involved 3,800,000 hours of erection, testing and commissioning on-site with no injuries. The teams included 900 construction and installation crew members and 60 testing and commissioning engineers and experts. Over 9,500 tons (26,000 m3) of equipment was supplied from 12 AREVA T&D production sites around the world.

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