A consortium between Siemens and Sumitomo Electric Industries Ltd. has been awarded an HVDC order from Indian transmission operator Power Grid Corporation of India (POWERGRID) to supply a high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission system.

Impression: The Pugalur- Thrissur HVDC project, is a part of PGCIL’s plan to counter extreme power deficit in the country’s southern region where power shortage creeps up to 3 GW under peak load situation. In order to cope with this challenge, PGCIL has planned to implement two HVDC schemes:

Scheme-1 : Raigarh -Pugalur, 800 kV, 6000 MW LCC based HVDC system;
Scheme-2 : Pugalur- Thrissur, 320 kV, 2000 MW VSC based HVDC system

Scheme-2 infographic. Image Source: Siemens press release.

In January 2017, ABB (in consortium with BHEL) was awarded the scheme-1 contract. PTR’s previous impression on this announcement emphasized ABB’s ability to win large power HVDC projects due to its focus on Thyristor based technology. Interestingly, Siemens has been awarded second phase scheme which is based on VSC technology. This perfectly encapsulates the differentiated technological focus of ABB and Siemens in HVDC field. To PTR, this indicates Siemens’ persistent emphasis on VSC based converter technology, which in the recent past, has enhanced its presence in European HVDC market.

PTR believes that the Pugalur- Thrissur HVDC project will open doors to more VSC based nationwide projects in India. In addition to the countrywide HVDC links, India plans to connect its grid with other South Asian countries through cross-border transmission links. By looking at current situation of India’s national grid, PTR anticipates that future cross-border transmission projects could be based on VSC HVDC which would be a great opportunity for Siemens to strengthen its position in the Asian HVDC market.

Link to press release: Siemens wins order for HVDC link in India