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Minnesota Power Deploys Huge Capacitor Bank to Improve Grid Reliability

image credit: Hitachi
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Minnesota Power’s Great Northern Transmission Line has just commissioned a Hitachi capacitor bank of 500 kV – 1400 MVAr to help ensure the delivery of more carbon-free hydropower from Manitoba, Canada - to users in North-Eastern Minnesota.

The capacitor bank enhances the transfer capability and reliability of the transmission connection between the power plant and its consumers, so this project, in partnership with Hitachi ABB Power Grids, will ensure Minnesota Power is able strengthen its commitment to shift rapidly toward an emission-free electricity system.

This installation of a new 500 kilovolt (kV) transmission line extending between Winnipeg, Manitoba and Grand Rapids, Minnesota, is part of Minnesota Power’s ‘EnergyForward’ strategy to transition to cleaner energy sources while meeting customer expectations for an affordable, reliable and stable electricity supply. Two years ago, Minnesota Power became the first utility in the state to deliver 50 per cent renewable energy to its customers and has a target of achieving 100 per cent carbon-free energy by 2050.

Alireza Aram, Managing Director, Grid Integration business, North America, Hitachi ABB Power Grids says, “We are pleased to play such a critical role in helping Minnesota Power increase the availability of clean power to its customers in the region,” he continues, “This new series capacitor bank, one of the largest in the world, will enable Minnesota Power to meet its customers’ energy needs while increasing system reliability, and support their efforts to reduce carbon emissions from their operations.”

The transition to a carbon-free energy system will not be an easy one. Many different approaches will be needed to build up appropriate infrastructure. Minnesota Power and Hitachi have shown one innovative approach to create a a stronger, smarter and greener grid.

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