Photo by Hitachi Energy.
David Olofsson, Global Manager HVDC Service for Hitachi Energy, and Léon Makwenge Kapikila, Director of Grand Projects for SNEL, at the contract signing ceremony.
David Olofsson, Global Manager HVDC Service for Hitachi Energy, and Léon Makwenge Kapikila, Director of Grand Projects for SNEL, at the contract signing ceremony.
David Olofsson, Global Manager HVDC Service for Hitachi Energy, and Léon Makwenge Kapikila, Director of Grand Projects for SNEL, at the contract signing ceremony.
David Olofsson, Global Manager HVDC Service for Hitachi Energy, and Léon Makwenge Kapikila, Director of Grand Projects for SNEL, at the contract signing ceremony.
David Olofsson, Global Manager HVDC Service for Hitachi Energy, and Léon Makwenge Kapikila, Director of Grand Projects for SNEL, at the contract signing ceremony.

Hitachi Energy to Link DR Congo Utility to Hydroelectric Facility with HVDC Transmission Line

Oct. 31, 2022
Long-term service agreement will extend the operating life of the 40-year-old link.

Hitachi Energy signed a long-term service agreement with Société Nationale d’Electricité (SNEL), the national electricity company of the Democratic Republic of Congo, to secure power supply in the country’s most important power transmission asset: the Inga-Kolwezi high-voltage direct current (HVDC) link.

The link supplies up to 1,000 MW of emission-free electricity from the Inga Falls hydropower plant in the far west of the country to the Kolwezi mining region in the south. With a length of 1,700 kilometers, it is the company’s longest HVDC link in Africa. It also enables the Democratic Republic of Congo to export surplus power to the member countries of the Southern African Power Pool.

The agreement continues the close collaboration between SNEL and Hitachi Energy over the past 40 years to ensure the link operates at maximum availability and reliability over its long operating life. Hitachi Energy supplied the two converter stations at either end of the link in 1982 and has subsequently upgraded them and doubled transmission capacity.

Hitachi Energy’s HVDC solution combines expertise in HVDC converter valves; the MACH digital control platform, converter power transformers and high-voltage switchgear; as well as system studies, design and engineering, supply, installation supervision and commissioning.

HVDC Light is a voltage source converter technology developed by Hitachi Energy. It is the preferred technology for many grid applications, including interconnecting countries, integrating renewables and “power-from-shore” connections to offshore production facilities. HVDC Light’s defining features include uniquely compact converter stations and exceptionally low electrical losses.

As part of the agreement, Hitachi Energy will assess the precise service needs of the converter stations and develop a preventive maintenance program and supervise its implementation over the next five years. The agreement includes training, knowledge sharing and expertise enhancement of SNEL service personnel.

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of T&D World, create an account today!