ST. PAUL, Minn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Electric utilities in Russia are continuing to expand their adoption of
3M’s new transmission line technology, which enables substantial
increases in overhead line capacity without requiring larger towers or
wider rights of way.
In the latest development, Vologda TPP and Vologdaenergo this month
reported the installation of 3M ACCR (Aluminum Conductor Composite
Reinforced) on a line that links new combined-cycle gas turbine
generating units to Vologdaenergo’s power line network. The
double-circuit 110kV line boosted distribution capacity by a factor of
2.5, enabling delivery of the power generated at these units to local
substations, reducing the need to import electricity from neighboring
regions, and improving reliability in the area.
Last month, a utility in Siberia, Irkutsk Electronetwork Co., completed
installation of ACCR, nearly doubling capacity on a line serving the
central district of Irkutsk without tower construction or expanded
rights of way. And in late 2011, the transmission unit of MOESK (Moscow
United Electric Grid Company) installed 3M ACCR to upgrade a line
serving a densely populated southern district of Moscow to avoid the
need for larger towers. It was the second application of 3M ACCR in
Moscow by MOESK. As of now, there are ten installations in Russia.
According to Anatoly Pinizhaninov, chief engineer of Vologdaenergo and
its deputy director for technical issues, a five-year investment program
that began in 2011 will include additional infrastructure upgrades, of
which ACCR “will be an important component.”
Situated in northwestern Russia, Vologda is an “oblast” (administrative
district) that includes the ancient city of Vologda, where Tsar Ivan the
Terrible chose to hold court for a time in the 16th century. Today, the
city, with an estimated population of 302,000, is an important
transportation hub for international and domestic commerce, as well as a
major cultural center. The district is also known for its metallurgy
3M Russia has been awarded a special citation from the United Energy
Systems of Russia, representing the nation’s utilities, for 3M’s
development and implementation of “reliable, high-performance, and
fast-payback technologies and technical solutions for the power
“After the United States, Russia now has the largest number of 3M ACCR
installations,” says Tim Koenig, director of the 3M High Capacity
Conductor Program. “Brazil is close behind, and the unique conductor
also is at work in China and India. This is a reliable, proven
technology that has been embraced enthusiastically in the world’s
growing economies, especially for applications where tower construction
poses environmental concerns or logistical problems, such as in
congested urban neighborhoods. Its low-sag characteristic also helps
address clearance issues. 3M ACCR is a versatile, cost-efficient
Koenig also notes that 3M ACCR is helping utilities meet new demands
being placed on electricity grids, including the need to incorporate
power from renewable energy sources.
3M’s innovation is the ACCR conductor’s core, which is composed of
aluminum oxide (alumina) fibers embedded in high-purity aluminum using a
highly specialized and proprietary process. The result is a lightweight,
low-sag, high-capacity conductor that can carry up to twice the current
of conventional steel-core conductors of the same diameter on existing
towers, thereby helping utilities upgrade transmission lines while
avoiding a wide range of problems in a variety of applications. It has
the durability and longevity of traditional steel core conductors, even
after decades of continuous operation at temperatures as high as 210
degrees Celsius (410° F) and in emergency conditions at 240 degrees
Celsius (464° F). The conductor’s performance has been demonstrated
during testing at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National
Laboratory in Tennessee and in more than a decade of successful U.S. and
international installations. ACCR was developed with the support of the
U.S. Department of Energy and with early contributions by the Defense
Advanced Research Projects Agency.
3M holds several patents on its ACCR
technology, which has been recognized by R&D Magazine with an
R&D 100 Award as one of the most technologically significant products
introduced into the marketplace, and by the Minnesota High Tech
Association with a Tekne Award for innovative development.
Electrical Markets Division, based in Austin, Texas, designs,
manufactures and markets products for electrical construction,
industrial maintenance, utility and industrial power, and electrical and
electronic components. EMD has more than 60 years of experience serving
customers with highly reliable products, including electrical and
electronic insulating tapes and papers; electromagnetic compatible
products; power cable splices and terminations; high-temperature,
low-sag transmission conductors; heat shrinkable tubing and molded
shapes; electrical wire connectors, terminals, tools and lugs; wire
marking products; cable ties; portable labeling devices and electrical
diagnostic and detection products.
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