Boosting Transmission Grid Efficiency with Advanced Conductors and Drones

Share on:           

Published: 24 November 2022

The Dhaka and Western Zone grid expansion project is using high-level tech applications to raise efficiency, cut emissions, and build climate resilience.


Despite significant socioeconomic development over the past decade, Bangladesh still faces major challenges to sustainable growth because of infrastructure deficiencies, including in the energy sector.

The country has made considerable progress in increasing generation capacity to meet the growing demand for electricity to achieve its vision of becoming an upper middle-income country by 2031. Yet the sector still suffers from recurring power supply shortages, an increasing number of interruptions, and damaging voltage fluctuations.

Transmission and distribution losses and inefficiencies are persistent problems afflicting Bangladesh and other developing economies in the region. Applying the latest technologies in energy transmission, such as high-temperature low-sag (HTLS) conductors and dynamic line rating, can help address these issues and improve supply-side energy efficiency and promote renewable energy development as well as cross-border power trade. Advances in technology also offer solutions for building the resilience of the electricity infrastructure to risks from climate change, natural hazards, malicious attacks, and human errors.

High-Level Tech Solutions

In Bangladesh, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) is supporting a project to expand transmission lines in Greater Dhaka and the western zone using high-level technology applications to increase efficiency and reduce carbon emissions as well as strengthen climate resilience. The project area covers Dhaka, Khulna, and Barishal, which are economic growth centers.

Launched in 2019, the project is installing high-level advanced conductors, which were also used in the Southwest Transmission Grid Expansion project approved in 2018. These new conductors allow more power transfer at lower energy losses and have higher resilience to extreme weather events. The project will also introduce drone technology to improve safety and efficiency of operation and maintenance.

The video above explains how high-temperature low-sag (HTLS) aluminum conductor composite core (ACCC) cable reduces thermal sag compared with the conventional aluminum conductor steel reinforced (ACSR) cable. It also talks about the advantages of deploying drones for the inspection of transmission lines to make the work safer, more efficient, and more cost-effective.

Once the upgrading and expansion of the transmission network are completed, the improvements are expected to not only strengthen Bangladesh’s energy security but also boost the country’s capacity for more massive integration of renewable energy and increased cross-border power trade with neighboring countries.

Aiming Zhou
Deputy Country Director, People’s Republic of China Resident Mission, Asian Development Bank

Aiming has over 25 years of professional experience, including more than 13 years in ADB. Prior to his current position, he was Senior Advisor to the Vice-President (Operations 1). He also served as Principal Energy Specialist for South Asia, secretary of ADB’s Energy Community of Practice, and focal point for the Clean Energy Program. He has a doctoral degree in Energy and Environmental Policy from the University of Delaware and a master’s in System Engineering (Energy) from Tsinghua University.

Kazuhiro Horiguchi
Energy Specialist, Energy Sector Office, Sectors Group, Asian Development Bank

Kazuhiro Horiguchi has been working on ADB energy-related projects. Prior to his current role, he was engaged in power grid operations, smart-grid projects, and renewable energy projects in Southeast Asia and Europe as well as Japan at a Japanese electric utility for more than 15 years.

Asian Development Bank (ADB)

The Asian Development Bank is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region. Its main instruments for helping its developing member countries are policy dialogue, loans, equity investments, guarantees, grants, and technical assistance.

Follow Asian Development Bank (ADB) on
Leave your question or comment in the section below:

The views expressed on this website are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) or its Board of Governors or the governments they represent. ADB does not guarantee the accuracy of the data included in this publication and accepts no responsibility for any consequence of their use. By making any designation of or reference to a particular territory or geographic area, or by using the term “country” in this document, ADB does not intend to make any judgments as to the legal or other status of any territory or area.