Coopers Mill substation near Windsor, Maine, is part of AVANGRID’s multi-billion-dollar effort to make its electrical grid servicing in New York, Maine and other parts of New England safer, more reliable, and more storm resilient. Given the cost and customer impact of even short blackouts, as well as storm damage and restoration costs, ABB’s SVC Light® solution is an attractive insurance policy for AVANGRID.
ABB’s SVC Light® acts as a Static Compensator (STATCOM) in the grid by injecting or absorbing reactive power. The net effect is an increased voltage stability and a higher power transfer capability in the existing grid, especially during times of network congestion and rapid changes of loads. A STATCOM is a very fast and accurate static VAR compensator (SVC) device and part of the Flexible AC transmission system (FACTS) device family, regulating voltage, power factor, harmonics and stabilizing the system.
“Energy consumption in America is doubling every 20 years,” said Marco Berardi, Global Product Group Manager for ABB’s Grid & Power Quality Solutions in North America. “ABB’s SVC Light® ensures a reliable supply of power and will also enable the integration of more renewable power into the region.”
Contributing to a greener grid
Frequent and increasingly severe storms create recurring faults and outages in the region, but customers want a stable and reliable power grid that can provide electricity at all hours - even during storms. SVC Light® does exactly this by mitigating risk of blackouts caused by storms and other natural events.
Improved Power Grid stability
ABB’s SVC Light® is a very robust STATCOM device and when installed at one or more suitable points in a power grid it can increase the capacity to transfer power by enhancing voltage stability and maintaining a smooth voltage profile under varying network conditions. Based on voltage source converter (VSC) technology, it is rated ±200 Mvar (megavolts ampere) and will be installed at the 345-kilovolt (kV) Coopers Mills substation.
The SVC Light® installation at Coopers Mills is the largest installed single voltage source converter of its kind currently in service in North America and serves energy consumers in multiple ways. For example, it can support a grid overloaded by air conditioners on a hot and humid day and can improve power integration from large renewable energy generation projects under varying grid conditions.
ABB SVC Light® voltage source converter technology is based on a chain-link modular multilevel converter (MMC) that is particularly adapted for power grids and very heavy industrial applications. It uses large power electronic modules based on a proven high-voltage direct current (HVDC) design, including advanced control features to manage reactive power. The ABB Ability™ Modular Advanced Control for HVDC (MACH™) is instrumental in controlling reactive power in the grid.