ABB delivers European power link in record time

Nordic-Baltic interconnection will strengthen European electrical grid

Zurich, Switzerland, Dec. 4, 2006 - ABB, the leading power and automation group, completed the first interconnection joining power grids in the Nordic and Baltic regions in record time, improving the reliability and efficiency of electricity supplies in Europe.

The Estlink connection between Estonia and Finland is one of the priority projects in the European Union's plan to improve cross-border power infrastructure, reduce blackouts and help create more efficient power markets in Europe.

It was inaugurated today in the presence of executives from five utilities that own the link; EU Energy Commissioner Andries Piebalgs; and representatives of the Finnish, Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian governments.

“Estlink is more than an engineering feat,” said ABB President and CEO Fred Kindle. “It brings the EU closer to the goal of creating a European electricity network, and extends the benefits of a reliable power supply with low environmental impact.”

ABB designed, built and installed the 105-kilometer (65-mile) underground and underwater link using its HVDC (High-Voltage Direct Current) Light technology. Modular construction cut ABB’s delivery time to 19 months from the 30 usually needed for comparable installations.

ABB pioneered HVDC technology and has supplied more than half the world’s HVDC converter stations. HVDC Light is an advance of the technology, offering secure power control and quick power restoration in the event of a blackout.

HVDC Light is also environmentally friendly, featuring oil-free cables, no electromagnetic fields, compact converter stations and underground or underwater power lines.

ABB ( is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 107,000 people.

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