High voltage direct current (HVDC) technology and integration of stationary energy storage (SES) are an essential part of the future electricity grid. Wide adaptation of the new DC technology brings also challenges like space charge accumulation in insulation, which requires new material solutions. Space charge accumulation and breakdown reliability in DC insulation can be improved by optimizing the trap depth and charge mobility. Chemical functionalization of nanoparticles and their successful dispersion in polymer matrix is a route for higher performance DC insulation materials.
GRIDABLE project demonstrates novel polypropylene-silica nanocomposite insulation material in HVDC cable and in DC capacitor insulation. They are both key components in voltage source converter (VSC) technology that is used in modern grid connection for renewable production and SES sites. The novel polypropylene-silica insulation material has a potential to improve the reliability of HVDC applications. By utilizing HVDC power transmission and VSC the required space for SES-to-grid integration is reduced by half compared to conventional design, geographical constraints are lowered, and power production reliability is improved.
GRIDABLE project is structured on six Work Packages:
WP1 Materials, sustainability and safety
Material recipe formulations will be designed according to the end-product requirements. Nanosafety guide will be created to minimize health risks to research staff. Material processing benefits including energy consumption, materials, and resource efficiency will be evaluated related to using thermoplastic materials compared to thermosets.
WP2 Functionalized compound
Clean processing conditions will be created to produce clean (no impurities) electrical insulation materials for cables and capacitors. Nanoparticle functionalization is optimized to fit new cable recipes and compounding is done to produce nanocomposite materials for further processing.
WP3 End-user applications prototypes
Capacitor films and model cables are produced utilizing the new thermoplastic nanocomposites. Capacitor films will be demonstrated in a Voltage Source Converter setup, and the cable insulation in a MVDC model cable.
WP4 Quality and validation
Characterization of samples is performed with state of the art electrical and mechanical measurement systems including e.g. electrical breakdown measurements, space charge accumulation study, mechanical modulus and elongation at break measurements.
WP5 Exploitation, dissemination and communication
Preparation of business plan, IPR agreements, summary of publications and organization of dissemination events
Project coordination issues and data management plan
48 months from 1.1.2017 to 31.12.2020
8.32 M€ (5.58 M€ EU contribution)
Grant Agreement No 720858 (H2020-NMBP-18-2016)