New challenges in the Swedish electricity grid

On social media, lively discussions are taking place after Swedish television SVT published news that Holmen had shut down its paper machines in Hallstavik and Braviken in the past week due to electricity becoming too expensive. The NPP Ringhals has closed its second reactor at the same time as we are experiencing the worst winter cold in a very long time, which has resulted in Sweden importing electricity and having to start up the oil-fired reserve power plant in Karlshamn.

Proponents of nuclear power go through the roof over the fact that people are urged not to vacuum at the same time as we are recommended to use electric cars as much as possible and are also rewarded through various environmental premiums.

In addition, there is the challenge of load balancing. For the electricity system to work, there must always be a balance between production and consumption of electricity. Frequency is a measure and result of how well the production and use of electricity is in balance. The frequency in the Nordic synchronous area shall be 50.00 Hz. If consumption is higher than production, the frequency decreases; if production is higher than consumption, the frequency rises.

Yesterday, a registered frequency deviation occurred due to the NordLink between Norway and Germany tripped with 1400 MW imports. This is the second time in a short time that the Swedish electricity grid has been affected by the new connection between Norway and Germany. NordLink is an offshore 1400 megawatt HVDC power cable between Norway and Germany. The cable is over 500 kilometers long and works with a voltage of 500 kV. The cable is currently being tested and full operation is expected in 2021.

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