MANHASSET, N.Y. American Superconductor Corp. has teamed with Consolidated Edison Inc. to develop new high-temperature superconductor (HTS) power grid technology for New York City.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will provide up to $25 million of the total project cost of $39.3 million to develop technology for "Secure Super Grids." The new grids will use customized HTS wires, power cables and ancillary controls to deliver more power while suppressing power surges that can disrupt service.
"Project Hydra" will provide multiple paths for electricity flow in power grids to ensure system reliability if circuits are disrupted. American Superconductor is the prime contractor for Project Hydra.
"We have asked AMSC and Consolidated Edison to demonstrate superconductor solutions in New York City that will serve to keep our centers of commerce online under all conditions, including grid events related to severe weather, accidents or terrorist attacks," Jay Cohen, DHS undersecretary for science and technology, said in a statement.
Testing of the first secure grid system is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2008.
The project's next phase will focus on deployment of the first grid system at an undisclosed New York City location.
American Superconductor will supply HTS wire, known as 344 superconductors, for the project, and will contract with Southwire Co. for cable and termination designs as well as the manufacture of superconductor cable. Commissioning of the 13-kilovolt HTS cable system is expected in early 2010.
The project builds on HTS technology developed over the past 20 years by U.S. industry and by the Energy Department, which is funding the demonstration of HTS power cables in three U.S. power grids.