Siemens Energy and its consortium partner Sumitomo Electric have been awarded a contract to supply converter technology for a project to connect the UK and Ireland’s power grids to each other.

Under the contract, Siemens Energy and Sumitomo Electric will supply high-voltage direct current (HVDC) cable and converter technology for Greenlink, a 190km electricity interconnector.

Siemens Energy will design and build two converter stations for the 500MW HVDC link project, located in Ireland and Wales respectively.

Both stations will be equipped with Siemens Energy’s HVDC PLUS technology with a modular multi-level arrangement (VSC-MMC), which will convert alternating current to direct current and vice versa.

Siemens Energy has also signed a service and maintenance agreement with an initial duration of seven years.

Sumitomo will supply an HVDC XLPE cable system linking the two converter stations. The stations will enable the low-loss transport of energy with a voltage of 320kV.

Works on the project are due to begin next year once financial close has been achieved.

Upon completion, the Greenlink interconnector is expected to make both countries’ power supplies more secure, as the HVDC technology allows the flow of electricity in either direction.

It is also designed to make the grids more stable and integrate low-carbon energy into them.

Siemens Energy Transmission executive vice-president Beatrix Natter said: “Interconnectors like Greenlink play a critical role in strengthening the share of renewable sources in the European energy mix and bolstering energy security.

“We at Siemens Energy are very pleased that Greenlink chose our state-of-the-art HVDC technology, adding a new lighthouse project to our proven track record of ten HVDC projects in implementation and more than 59 successfully completed projects worldwide.”

In May, Siemens Energy secured three contracts from ESB to provide Static Compensator (SVC PLUS) technology for managing grid stability at three substation sites in south-west Ireland.