Following the Sun: Subsea Energy Interconnection, Linking Europe and North America

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Three European entrepreneurs propose a groundbreaking undersea energy interconnection to link Europe with North America. Touted as the world’s largest subsea energy interconnection, this ambitious project aims to transfer renewable electricity bi-directionally, leveraging the sun’s movement across the sky.

Project Overview

The proposed interconnection involves three pairs of high-voltage cables spanning over 3,200 kilometers across the Atlantic Ocean, connecting the western UK with eastern Canada and potentially linking New York with western France, as reported by CNN.

The cables are designed to transmit solar-generated electricity between continents depending on the time of day. By capitalizing on the sun’s trajectory, the system would send surplus solar energy from European solar plants to North America when it is daytime in Europe, and vice versa.

Operational Dynamics

Simon Ludlam, founder and CEO of Etchea Energy, explains that when the sun is at its peak in Europe, the continent generates more power than it needs. This excess energy could be exported to the United States. Conversely, when the sun reaches its zenith on the US East Coast, Europe could import energy from North America.

The cables are projected to transmit up to 6 GW of power in both directions at the speed of light, equivalent to the output of six large-scale nuclear power plants. Laurent Segalen, founder of the London-based renewable energy company Megawatt-X, highlights the project’s potential to revolutionize energy exchange.

Geopolitical and Economic Implications

Named NATO-L, or North Atlantic Transmission One-Link, the project has significant geopolitical ramifications. While it is in its early stages and not expected to be completed before the mid-2030s, NATO-L would require substantial investment from multiple countries. The project’s estimated cost ranges from

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