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NordLink NordLink - the "green link" for exchanging German wind energy with Norwegian hydropower - is a connection of two optimally complementary systems. NordLink is a lighthouse project and an enormously important building block of the European energy transition to compensate for dark periods and at the same time to make green energy available safely and affordably in the EU.

Schleswig-Holstein, Norway
  • NordLink
NordLink Converter Wilster

About this project

The "green link"

NordLink is implemented as a high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission between Germany and Norway with a route length of 623 km, whereof 516 km are realized as submarine cable. Due to its length, direct current is used to transmit the electricity through both cables (positive and negative poles), which are connected to converter stations at each end. Direct current is especially advisable over long distances and for large-scale transmissions of power.

The converter stations are built in Wilster, Schleswig-Holstein/Germany, and Tonstad in Norway. At these sites, the electricity is converted from direct (DC) to alternating current (AC) - or vice versa, depending on the direction of transmission - and fed into the German or Norwegian transmission grid in order to supply households and companies with electricity. In absolute terms, NordLink can supply around 3.6 million German households.

Grid connection points

  • From substation Wilster in Germany to substation Tonstadt in Norway


  • 623 km
  • 1.400 MW capacity at ± 525 kV DC
A driving force for the energy transition/integration of renewable energy

NordLink is a milestone in the realisation of the energy transition. With the incorporation of the project into the Federal Requirements Plan Act, the necessity and urgent need for the implementation of the project for the energy market has been established by law. The conferral of the status of ,Project of Common Interest’ by the European Union, in accordance with the new guidelines for trans-European energy infrastructure, underlines the high economic and energy-economical importance of the project at European level. NordLink – the ,green link’ – creates a connection to the capacities of hydropower plants in Norway and will counteract bottlenecks in the German transmission grid. This interconnector increases facilities for the exchange of renewable energy and plays its part in the reduction of carbon emissions and achievement of climatic objectives. NordLink has a capacity of 1,400 megawatts (MW) and can supply more than 3.6 million German households with renewable energy. This is equivalent to the same feed-in power as would be produced by 466 wind turbines at 3 MW each. This means that the capacity of the interconnector is slightly higher than that of a large conventional power station.


  • 01 NordLink drilling rig HDD drilling under crossing land protection dike Buesum

    Drilling rig on the onshore construction site installation area as part of the HDD drilling for the undercrossing of the land protection dyke near Büsum.

  • 02 NordLink converter construction site substation Wilster

    In the foreground: NordLink converter construction site in Wilster/Schleswig-Holstein in August 2016. In the background: Wilster/West substation.

  • 03 NordLink topping-out ceremony converter building Wilster

    Topping-out ceremony for the NordLink converter buildings in October 2017.

  • 04 NordLink converter construction site clay city NO

    NordLink converter construction site in Tonstad (Ertsmyra)/Norway in spring 2016.

  • 05 NordLink cable crossing facility loading point Vollesfjord NO

    Vollesfjord cable crossing facility at NordLink's landing point in Norway in August 2017; the cable-laying vessel "Nexans Skagerrak" is in the background on the right.

  • 06 NordLink transport transformers converter station Tonstad NO

    Transformer transport in Norway to the Tonstad converter station in summer 2017.

  • 07 NordLink submarine cable laying ship Skagerrak NexansVollesfjord NO

    Laying the first submarine cable strand in Vollesfjord, Norway, in summer 2017.

  • 08 NordLink submarine cable pull-in NordLink land protection dike Buesum

    NordLink's submarine cable installation under the Büsum land protection dike. View of the tidal flat cable laying ship in front of the Büsum dike. There, the NordLink submarine cable is inserted into the empty pipes that run under the dike towards the land side.

  • 09 NordLink submarine cable laying rewinding submarine cable Wadden Sea area

    NordLink submarine cable laying in the German North Sea area in August 2018. Two cable laying vessels in the Wadden Sea area rewinding submarine cables from one vessel to the other.

  • 10 NordLink submarine cable pull-in NordLink empty pipe land protection dike Buesum

    NordLink submarine cable insertion under the Büsum land protection dyke. The moment when the NordLink submarine cable is inserted into the empty conduit that runs under the dike.

  • 11 NordLink land cable feed NordLink

    Land cable pull-in NordLink.

  • 12 NordLink excavation cable trench

    Excavation of the cable trench for the NordLink land cable.

  • 13 NordLink HDD drilling inland dike Warwerorter Kanal Büsum

    HDD drilling at the inland dike to underpass the Warwerort Canal near Büsum, Schleswig-Holstein.

  • 14 NordLink aerial view converter plant Wilster

    Converter plant in Wilster, from top to bottom: High-voltage connections from AC yard to transformer yard, transformer yard, converter bus yard, feedthroughs into the reactors hall, reactors hall.

  • 15 NordLink aerial view converter plant Wilster

    Converter construction site NordLink in Wilster/Schleswig-Holstein in August 2020. In the foreground the switching station and the transformers, in the background the converter halls.

  • 16 NordLink interior view valve hall converter plant Wilster

    The NordLink converter plant in Wilster: A look into the valve hall.

  • 17 NordLink Luftaufnahme Konverteranlage Tonstad NO

    The completed NordLink converter station in Tonstad, Norway, spring 2020.

  • 18 NordLink interior photograph reactor hall converter plant Tonstad NO

    The NordLink converter station in Tonstad from inside: Here a view into the choke hall.

  • 19 NordLink aerial view converter station substation Wilster

    In the foreground, the NordLink converter station in Wilster/Schleswig-Holstein in May 2021. In the background, the Wilster-West substation.

  • 20 NordLink Official commissioning

    From left: Daniel Günther (Minister President of Schleswig-Holstein), Markus Scheer (Management Board Member of the KfW IPEX-Bank), Peter Altmaier (former Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy), Manon van Beek (CEO TenneT), Angela Merkel (former German Chancellor), Erna Solberg (former Prime Minister of Norway), Hilde Tonne (CEO Statnett), Tina Bru (Minister of Energy of Norway), Jon Fredrik Baksaas (Chairman of the Board of Directors Statnett).
European market integration

NordLink is the first interconnector to provide a direct link between the Norwegian and German energy markets. This connection promotes the integration of the North-western European energy market, increases market efficiency and contributes to a stabilisation of energy prices.

,Storage´ of wind energy

Connecting Norwegian hydropower with German wind power provides benefits for both countries. Whenever a surplus of wind energy is produced in Germany, for example, it can be transmitted via NordLink to Norway. The reservoirs in Norway then serve as natural storage for wind energy as the water remains in the reservoirs. Conversely, Germany can import hydropower from Norway when demand is high.

German-Norwegian cooperation

The NordLink project was implemented by the Norwegian TSO Statnett and DC Nordseekabel GmbH & Co. KG, each with 50% ownership. TenneT and KfW each have a 50% share in DC Nordseekabel. DC Nordseekabel was responsible for the construction and approvals on the German part of the project.


Mathias Fischer

Mathias Fischer

Spokesperson – Grid expansion Onshore Northern Germany & Offshore, Sector Coupling, Energy Policy and Industrial Strategy Northern Germany, Finance, Flexibility & Innovations