GLOBAL RESOURCES ANALYSIS
TECHNOLOGIES | NETWORK TECHNOLOGY
Remote power generation demands transport of power from generation area's to consuming areas. Before the development of the HVDC (High Voltage Direct Current) technology, transport of power was very expensive due to the relatively high power loss and higher installation costs of the former dominating power transport dominating HVAC power lines. The HVDC technology has fixed this huge problem of power transport reducing it to +/- 3% per 1000 km. Without the HVDC technology remote power generating was only possible by the old HVAC technology or by hydrogen (generation and regeneration lost) as transport media. The only 3% power lost per 1000 km from HVDC technology is economic acceptable. Also are the investment and maintenance costs of HVDC power infrastructures much, much lower than of HVAC power infrastructures. The WorldBank sees certainly a new reason of existence in an in short time completely changed capital world (examples: Russia that just pays of her international debts completely and just overnight, or China that finance some African Nations) in financing international and intercontinental HVDC networks for energy based bilaterals and multilaterals (see PDF on http://www.worldbank.org/html/fpd/em/transmission/technology_abb.pdf). The HVDC network technology makes remote power generation economic possible in terms of investment write downs, maintenance costs and power lost. Power will be generated far away from consumption areas in deserts, seas and steppes. HVDC infrastructures will be mainly sea route based, as they are used isolated sea capable cables. HVDC cable build-in fibers will also improve the density of the international fiber networks on just routes now have less density and less capacity, connecting the Emerging World digitally more and better with the rest of the world. This fiber facet of HVDC intercontinental networks will be an extra reason why desert owning states will be very interested in huge CSP farms in their deserts. The more giant they are the more capital will be available for network redundancy and improves their digital connection with the world and even will give them a digital hub capacity. By huge desert based power generation projects (huge as in several hundreds or even thousands of TWh) redundancy in HVDC networks is crucial, both on generating side (removing the energy), as on the consuming side (receiving the energy). Redundancy makes networks less to totally not attractive for terroristic activities. Blowing just a few cables than will not have any total network impact. It just damage the cables and multiplies not the effect (one thing terror always achieves).
Author: Gijs Graafland
Back to Technologies Index
Download the full Global Resources Analysis report in PDF