Mitsubishi Electric to Build HVDC Verification Facility at Transmission and Distribution Systems Center

Will launch voltage-sourced converter (VSC) based high voltage direct current (HVDC) systems business globally

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TOKYO, October 12, 2016 - Mitsubishi Electric Corporation (TOKYO: 6503) announced today that it will enter the global market for voltage-sourced converters (VSC) based high-voltage direct current (HVDC) systems with a new HVDC verification facility to be built at its Transmission and Distribution Center in Amagasaki, Japan by 2018. The company is targeting more than US$ 500 million in global orders for HVDC-Diamond® systems by 2020.

Rendition of Mitsubishi Electric's HVDC Verification Facility

HVDC systems are expected to reduce CO2 through the efficient integration and expansion of renewable energies, such as photovoltaic and offshore wind power. HVDC-Diamond® systems will utilize the company's own high-voltage insulated gate bipolar transistors (HVIGBT).

HVIGBT devices are insulated for high voltage and designed for large current ratings to reduce the number of sub-modules, resulting in space and cost savings. The parallel connectivity of the HVIGBT devices in each sub-module allows for a flexible design to meet wide-ranging needs for power transmission capacities in the global market for VSC-based HVDC systems.

HVDC-Diamond® will offer high reliability through the use of high speed control and protection systems. Optimized control functions with appropriate hardware configuration will comply with system requirements for stable and continuous operation, even during faults on the AC network such as lightning strikes. Protection systems with high speed response will ensure all equipment can be effectively protected from high currents generated at the time of DC faults within the HVDC system.

There are two types of HVDC systems; the line-commutated converter (LCC) type requires an external power source for commutation, while the VSC type does not. VSC-based HVDC systems are expected to be in greater demand with a more compact footprint as a result of having the innate ability of separately controlling active and reactive power. This advantage allows for applying VSC-based HVDC in weak systems and removes the need for additional reactive compensation from harmonic filters and other reactive voltage support.

Mitsubishi Electric is launching the business of VSC-based HVDC globally in response to the various needs of modern power systems and will implement its verification facility aiming to be operational in the first part of 2018 for the verification of HVDC-Diamond®. The global market for HVDC systems, estimated to have been worth about US$ 5 billion in 2015, is expected to grow by about seven percent annually.

HVDC Verification Facility
Location 8-1-1 Tsukaguchi-Honmachi, Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture, Japan
Building Area Approx. 1,250 square meters (approx. 13,450 square feet)
Floor Space Approx. 1,700 square meters (approx. 18,300 square feet)
Structure Two-story steel-frame
Start of Operation First half of 2018
Specification 50MW VSC-based HVDC BTB*
Main facility Converter, Control and protection, AC equipment

*HVDC BTB (back-to-back): HVDC system which transfers energy between AC buses at the same location.

Note that the releases are accurate at the time of publication but may be subject to change without notice.