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Sumitomo Electric 120 Years of History

In April 2017, we will celebrate our 120th anniversary. Taking this opportunity, we have launched a new project to review our past. The final installment of the series covers the period from approximately 20 years ago to the present, in which we took on various challenges in developing new products and technologies while taking advantage of our copper-related technologies, which can be described as the source of our development.

6th Round: 2001 – 2017


Sumitomo Electric succeeds in world’s first long-term operation of HTS cable in utility grid

We conducted a long-term electrification test of our high-temperature superconducting (HTS) cable, by manufacturing an approximately 350 m HTS cable and installing it between two substations in Albany, New York. Connected to a utility grid that was actually in use, the cable system successfully transmitted electric power to 70,000 households for approximately 7,000 hours over nine months from July 2006. Boasting low electric resistance, which leads to the reduction in energy loss during electricity transmission, HTS cables are regarded as a promising technology for energy conservation. Our test demonstrated the cables’ stability and reliability.


Sumitomo Electric exhibits superconductor electric vehicle at Integrated Exhibition of the Environment commemorating G8 Hokkaido Toyako summit in 2008

Superconductor electric vehicle
Superconductor electric vehicle

We exhibited the world’s first superconductor electric vehicle at the exhibition, and demonstrated the possibility that this technology could considerably contribute to solving environmental problems, such as by reducing CO2 emissions.

Sumitomo Electric replaces the Shisakajima Island submarine power cable

We replaced the submarine power cable leading to Shisakajima Island, located approximately 19 km offshore from Niihama City, Ehime Prefecture. The power cable had been originally installed by us in 1922 as the world’s longest in those days. The successful installation at that time led to our subsequent involvement in many projects requiring the installation of power cables, and to our accumulation of a wealth of experience in this field, enabling us to establish our current range of technologies and services.


Sumitomo Electric receives order to manufacture cable for next-generation European transmission network

The submarine cable manufactured at the Osaka Works
The submarine cable manufactured at the Osaka Works

In Europe, a project is now underway to promote the establishment of a next-generation transmission network, which is expected to invigorate the electricity market. The purpose of the project is to create a network that covers all of Europe and introduce renewable energy on a large scale. In this project, we received an order to manufacture a cable connecting Montenegro and Italy. In December 2016, we shipped a submarine cable approximately 120 km long from our Osaka Works to Italy.


Sumitomo Electric launches demonstration of world’s largest redox flow battery system

Redox flow battery system at our Yokohama Works
Redox flow battery system at our Yokohama Works

Together with Hokkaido Electric Power Co., Inc. (HEPCO), we jointly established the world’s largest-class redox flow battery system at the HEPCO Minami-Hayakita substation. In launching a demonstration test, we are aiming to verify the system’s performance as a new buffer for adjusting the output fluctuation of wind and solar power generation, and to develop optimum control technologies. We are working hard to contribute to more widespread use of renewable energy.

April 2017

Sumitomo Electric celebrates its 120th anniversary

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