30 December 2009 – State-owned utility China Southern Power Grid and Siemens Energy of Germany have successfully put into operation the first pole of the world's first 800 kV high voltage direct current (HVDC) link.
Once fully-operational, the Yunnan-Guangdong HVDC transmission system will have a transmission capacity of 5000 MW and cover a distance of more than 1400 km, making it the most powerful electricity transmission line in the world.
It is also the first HVDC link to operate at a transmission voltage of 800 kV.
The HVDC link will transmit electricity generated by hydropower plants in the province of Yunnan in the southwest of China to the Guangdong Province in the south. This is one of China's fastest growing industrial regions with 'megacities' such as Guangzhou and Shenzhen.
Commissioning of the second pole and start-up of the entire system is scheduled for mid-2010.