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Map of NordBalt.jpg
CountryLithuania, Sweden
Coordinates55°40′54″N 21°15′24″E / 55.68167°N 21.25667°E / 55.68167; 21.25667 (Klaipėda substation)
56°46′4″N 15°51′15″E / 56.76778°N 15.85417°E / 56.76778; 15.85417 (Nybro substation)
General directioneast–west
Passes throughBaltic Sea
Ownership information
Svenska kraftnät
Construction information
Manufacturer of conductor/cableABB
Manufacturer of substationsABB
Construction started11 April 2014
Construction cost€552 million
Commissioned14 December 2015
Technical information
Typesubsea cable
Type of currentHVDC
Total length450 km (280 mi)
Power rating700 MW
AC voltage330 kV
400 kV
DC voltage±300 kV
No. of poles2

NordBalt (also formerly known as SwedLit) is a submarine power cable between Klaipėda in Lithuania and Nybro in Sweden. The purpose of the cable is to facilitate the trading of power between the Baltic and Nordic electricity markets, and to increase the supply and energy security in both markets.


The project was originally suggested in 2004. Original project Swindlit was aimed at construction of the wind farm in the Baltic Sea and ensuring the electricity transmission to Sweden and Lithuania. The participants of this project were interested also in Kruonis Pumped Storage Plant as an accumulator of variable wind energy.

In August 2006, the Lithuanian and Swedish transmission grid operators Lietuvos Energija and Svenska kraftnät agreed to launch a feasibility study of a possible interconnector.[1] In February 2007, Lietuvos Energija and Svenska Kraftnät signed an agreement with Swedish consulting company SWECO International on preparation of feasibility study. The study was completed in March 2008 with positive conclusions for the implementation of the project.[2]

On 9 July 2009, Lietuvos Energija, Latvenergo and Svenska Kraftnät signed a memorandum of understanding on the NordBalt project.[3] Invitation for pre-qualification for NordBalt converters' and cable procurement was launched in December 2009.[4] The sea bottom survey was conducted by Marin Mätteknik by 13 December 2009.[5] On 17 December 2010, Litgrid, a newly established transmission system operator of Lithuania who took the project over from Lietuvos Energija, and Svenska kraftnät, signed a €270 million contract with ABB according to which ABB manufactured the cable.[6] According to another contract, signed on 20 December 2010, ABB supplied two converter stations.[7]

In March 2013 the government of Lithuania approved construction plans for the coastal area.[8] On 18 April 2013 the Swedish government gave its final approval of the construction of a power cable.[9] Cable laying started on 11 April 2014.[10] It was laid by using C/S Lewek Connector.[11] The cable laying was disrupted several times by the Russian Navy[12][13] within the Exclusive Economic Zone of Lithuania[14] causing the Lithuanian prime minister to summon the Russian ambassador and protest against Russia's violation of the United Nation's Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).[15] On 9 June 2015, the cable laying works were completed.[16]

The cable was officially inaugurated on 14 December 2015.[17] However, due to fire near the Nybro substation, test transmission with a capacity of 30 MW started only on 1 February 2016.[18][19][20] On 17 February 2016, electricity transmitted via Nordbalt was traded first time at Nord Pool Spot.[21] As of March 2016 the interconnector is in a test phase.

Technical features[edit]

The interconnector uses high-voltage direct current (HVDC). The length of the cable is 450 kilometres (280 mi), of which 400 km (250 mi) is the submarine cable, 40 km (25 mi) is the land cable in Sweden, and 10 km (6.2 mi) is the land cable in Lithuania. Its maximum capacity is 700 MW with a ramping restriction of 600 MW,[22] where the 700 MW capacity corresponds to an annual transmission capacity of 6.1 TWh.


The interconnector cost €580 million, of which the submarine cable cost €270 million.[6][7] €175 million was paid by the European Commission.[3]

It connects the Nord Pool Spot bidding areas southern Sweden (SE4) and Lithuania (LT).[23]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Agreement on Feasibility Study of Construction of Transmission Line between Lithuania and Sweden signed" (Press release). Lietuvos Energija. 25 August 2006. Archived from the original on 8 March 2007. Retrieved 10 July 2009.
  2. ^ "SwedLit interconnection: Baltic countries resolve the dispute". Global Transmission. 1 May 2009. Retrieved 26 March 2016.
  3. ^ a b "Sweden, Lithuania, Latvia sign deal for power link". Reuters. 10 July 2009. Retrieved 11 July 2009.
  4. ^ "Invitation for pre-qualification for NordBalt converters' and cable procurement tenders announced" (Press release). InterLinks. 7 December 2009. Archived from the original on 9 February 2010. Retrieved 27 February 2010.
  5. ^ "Sea bottom survey completed" (Press release). InterLinks. 16 December 2009. Archived from the original on 9 February 2010. Retrieved 27 February 2010.
  6. ^ a b Adomaitis, Nerijus (17 December 2010). "ABB signs 270 mln euro NordBalt power cable deal". Reuters. Retrieved 20 December 2010.
  7. ^ a b Reid, Katie (20 December 2010). "ABB wins Nordic-Baltic power order". Reuters. Retrieved 31 December 2010.
  8. ^ "Vyriausybė leido tiesti elektros jungties "NordBalt" kabelį pajūrio juostoje" [The government has allowed the construction of the electrical interconnection NordBalt in the coastal zone]. Delfi (in Lithuanian). 6 March 2013. Retrieved 6 March 2013.
  9. ^ "Duotas leidimas elektros bambagyslei su Švedija" [Authorization given by Sweden for the power cable]. Delfi (in Lithuanian). 18 April 2013. Retrieved 11 April 2014.
  10. ^ "Pradedamas tiesti elektros jungties "NordBalt" kabelis" [NordBalt power cable construction started]. Lietuvos žinios (in Lithuanian). 11 April 2014. Retrieved 11 April 2014.
  11. ^ Worzyk, Thomas (30 April 2013). NordBalt - the ultra-long 300 kV extruded HVDC cable 280 miles through the Baltic Sea (PDF). ICC Spring Meeting. Lietuvos žinios. Retrieved 26 March 2016.
  12. ^ Crouch, David (2 May 2015). "Lithuania accuses Russia of disrupting work on Baltic power cable". Financial Times. Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  13. ^ Zander, Christina (6 May 2015). "Undersea Electricity Cable Generates Friction Between Russia and Baltics". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  14. ^ Braw, Elisabeth (5 May 2015). "Balts Say Russian Navy Bullying Undersea Cable Crews". Radio Free Europe. Retrieved 7 May 2015.
  15. ^ "Foreign Ministry of Lithuania summoned the Russian ambassador to express strong protest". Foreign Ministry of Lithuania. Retrieved 2 May 2015.
  16. ^ Verseckas, Darius (9 June 2015). "Baigė tiesti "NordBalt"" [Construction of NordBalt has finished]. Verslo žinios (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 9 December 2015.
  17. ^ "Baltic states reach 'milestone' in reducing energy dependence on Russia". Deutsche Welle. 14 December 2015. Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  18. ^ "Electricity begins flowing via the cable NordBalt". Baltic Course. 2 February 2016. Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  19. ^ "Power successfully transmitted through NordBalt cable" (Press release). Litgrid. 1 February 2016. Retrieved 2 February 2016.
  20. ^ "Completion of NordBalt and LitPol closes the Baltic Ring". Modern Power Systems. 23 March 2016. Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  21. ^ "First electricity transmitted through NordBalt sold on the market" (Press release). Litgrid. 18 February 2016. Retrieved 18 February 2016.
  22. ^ "NordBalt HVDC connection strengthens integration of Baltic energy markets with northern Europe". ABB Group. Retrieved 31 December 2010.
  23. ^ "During the first month of summer electricity price traditionally rose". 28 July 2015. Retrieved 8 August 2016.

External links[edit]