Alstom Grid and KEPCO Create Strategic HV Power Electronics Joint Venture

May 16, 2013 by Jeff Shepard

Alstom Grid and Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO), one of the largest electric utilities in the world, have announced the creation of KEPCO Alstom Power Electronics Systems (KAPES). The joint venture will focus on delivering high-voltage direct current (HVDC) projects in Korea. This long term strategic relationship aims at increasing Korean transmission grid capabilities based on Alstom technology. The joint venture is implemented with a shareholding of 49% for Alstom and 51% for KEPCO.

The HVDC global market is expected to grow by €50 billion between now and 2020 and is a strategic growth area for Alstom Grid and KEPCO, as Supergrids develop around the world. Alstom’s high-voltage direct current technology is essential for bringing large amounts of power across long distances, with minimal losses, and is also used for integrating renewables and for offshore connections.

Alstom Grid and KEPCO have been working together since 1997 on two important HVDC reference projects in Korea. Alstom provided the original 300 MW HVDC bipole link for the point-to-point submarine interconnection linking South Korea’s Jeju Island across 101 kilometers with the mainland in the late 1990s. In 2009, Alstom was then awarded a second contract to supply the new converter stations for the 400 MW high voltage direct current (HVDC) bipole scheme.

“This joint venture will allow Alstom to increase its HVDC technical footprint in Asia and KEPCO to benefit from Alstom’s proven industrial expertise”, said Patrick Plas, Senior Vice President, Alstom Grid. “We are very honored to partner with the largest electric utility in South East Asia. Our past success in HVDC projects in Korea has built common understanding and a strong and shared feeling of confidence”, Patrick Plas added.