Siemens is constructing a $450m high-voltage direct current transmission link between Ethiopia and Kenya.
The Ethiopia-Kenya Power Systems Interconnection Project will be roughly 1000 kilometers long and will transmit hydroelectricity.
Siemens said it will also “improve the exchange of energy between the two countries and optimize the use of distributed energy sources in this region”.
Siemens is building the link in a consortium with construction company Isolux Corsan and the order was placed by the Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation (EEPCO) and the Kenya Electricity Transmission Co (KETRACO).
The project is being financed by the World Bank and the African Development Bank and is scheduled to go into operation by the end of 2018.
Jan Mrosik, chief executive of Siemens’ Energy Management Division, said that the link “is one of the largest infrastructure measures in East Africa”.
He added that the link will makes it possible “to expand the AC power grids from Kenya to neighbour countries like Uganda and Tanzania, a development that is urgently needed”.
The bipolar system has a capacity of 2000 MW and will connect the two converter stations located in Kenya and Ethiopia with a direct current +/-500-kilovolt overhead line.
Siemens is supplying the core components such as converter valves with direct light-triggered power thyristors, converter transformers, smoothing reactors, protection and control equipment, as well as AC and DC filters.
Isolux is responsible for the construction, installation, and equipment in the converter and AC substations.