Prysmian to work on first Middle East subsea transmission system

Prysmian has entered into a Limited Notice to Proceed (LNTP) for the supply of power cables for what is said to be the first-of-its-kind high-voltage, direct current (HVDC-VSC) subsea power transmission system in the Middle East.


Prysmian received the €220 million LNTP from Samsung C&T as part of its EPC consortium with Jan De Nul.

The new link, part of the strategic HVDC transmission system for the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) Abu Dhabi National Energy Company PJSC (TAQA) Lightning Project, will allow bulk-power energy transmission between the converter station in Al Mirfa, in Abu Dhabi mainland, and that on the Al Ghallan artificial offshore island in the United Arab Emirates.

The project includes the design, supply, accessories assembly and site acceptance testing of four HVDC 320 kV single-core cables with XLPE insulation that will connect the Al Mirfa converter station to Al Ghallan.

The project comprises both a subsea route of 124 kilometers of submarine HVDC cables to be installed at a water depth of up to 35 meters and a land route of 3.5 kilometers of HVDC land cables.

Under the LNTP, Prysmian will perform engineering works, secure manufacturing capacity, proceed with partial production of the HVDC cables in advance of the full contract award and Notice to Proceed (NTP), scheduled for the third quarter of 2022, and remains subject to Samsung C&T receiving its related NTP under the main EPC contract.

All HVDC submarine cables will be produced at Prysmian’s Arco Felice facility in Italy, while the onshore cables will be manufactured at the Pikkala plant in Finland.

The submarine fiber optical cables will be produced at the Nordenham plant in Germany, while Prysmian will use its in-house asset management and electronics portfolio to supply a range of cable monitoring solutions.

With regards to the full contract award and NTP, Prysmian is expecting to enter into a parallel installation agreement with Jan De Nul for the subsea cable laying works, where the offshore installation activities will be performed by the company’s cable-laying vessel Leonardo da Vinci, with the shallow water activities being performed by cable-laying barge Ulisse.

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TAQA and ADNOC revealed the $3.6 billion strategic project on 22 December, stating that the aim is to significantly decarbonize ADNOC’s offshore production operations, in a push to strengthen their position in driving sustainability efforts and support the United Arab Emirates’ Net-Zero by 2050 Strategic Initiative.

With a capacity of 3.2 GW, the project comprising two HVDC links will be the most powerful power-from-shore solution in the MENA region to date, as well as the first HVDC power-from-shore solution outside Norwegian waters.

Swiss company Hitachi Energy will supply four converter stations, which convert AC power to DC for transmission in the subsea cable and then reconvert it to AC from DC for use in the offshore power systems.

Construction is expected to begin this year, with commercial operation starting in 2025.

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