When Energy Begins to Flow Long Distance

With rising energy prices and stringent requirements for producing a higher proportion of energy from renewable sources in the near future, long-distance electricity cables are increasingly thought of as a viable option for providing electricity.

The cables, or interconnectors to give them their proper name, transmit energy by way of High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) rather than the conventional Alternating Current (AC). For long-distance connections, HVDC cables are highly energy efficient, losing only 2-3 percent of power over 1,000 km.

Now, UK Energy Minister Charles Hendry is undergoing discussions with Iceland’s state-owned energy company, Landsvirkjun, on the possibility of setting up an underwater cable between the two countries to provide Britain with renewable energy from Iceland.

The energy would come from existing geothermal and hydroelectric power plants, although if the two pilot windmills which are scheduled to be installed later this year prove successful, wind power could also potentially be used to power the interconnector… Read more

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