The world’s longest subsea cable for clean energy transportation project initiated
The world’s longest subsea cable for clean energy transportation project has been initiated in the North African country to the UK. A UK-based renewables company Xlinks is developing a 10.5 gigawatt (GW) solar and wind farm in Morocco to supply the UK with clean energy via subsea cables.
The twin 1.8 GW high voltage direct current (HVDC) subsea cable will be the world’s longest.
The Xlinks Morocco-UK Power Project will cover an area of around 579 square miles (1,500 square kilometers) in Morocco.
It will be connected exclusively to the UK via 2,361 miles (3,800 km) of HVDC subsea cables following the shallow water route from Morocco to the UK, past Spain, Portugal, and France.
The Xlinks will construct 7 GW of solar and 3.5 GW of wind with onsite 20GWh/5GW battery storage at a cost of $21.9 billion.
The transmission subsea cable will consist of four cables with the first cable to be active in early 2027. The other three are slated for launch in 2029.
Morocco has ideal solar and wind resources making it suitable for green energy projects. It can also guarantee seamless power production throughout the year.
The North African country has the third-highest Global Horizontal Irradiance (GHI) in North Africa. It is estimated to be 20% greater than Spain’s GHI and over twice that of the UK.
In addition, the shortest winter day offers more than 10 hours of sunlight. This will help in providing production profiles to address the needs of the UK power market during periods of low offshore wind production.
Remote generation and interconnection between distant geographic regions with inversely correlated weather systems will be more effective at addressing imbalances of supply and demand over longer time periods.
The Xlinks remarks that solar panels generate about three times more power in Morocco than they would in the UK. Moreover, solar panels in Morocco will generate as much as five times more power from January to March than those in the UK.
The Morocco-UK Power Project will be capable of powering 7 million UK homes by 2030 and supply 8% of Britain’s electricity needs once complete.