High Voltage DC test lab opens in France 

November 24, 2017 // By Nick Flaherty
Nexans has opened a new High Voltage Test Centre in Calais, France, with the capacity to test cable systems up to 1.5 million volts.

The high voltage (HV) market is requiring an increasing number of tests at higher and higher voltage levels for long distance operation. Nexans has extended its testing capacity by building the new state-of-the-art direct current (DC) laboratory that allows three independent qualification loops to be tested simultaneously. Each loop is composed of multiple cable sections and joints and is connected to the electrical network through two terminations. It is designed to represent the various configurations existing in power grids. 

The generators, rated for voltages up to 1.2 million volts, operate in a controlled environment which guarantees the optimum equipment availability required for performing ageing tests typically lasting more than one year.

The 6,500 m² centre has 12 laboratories for testing HVDC cables, such as the two 90-km-long HVDC cables that will transport up to 900 MW of wind power being installed by Nexans in Germany, enough to transmit enough electricity for almost one million homes.