Pumped storage power projects

Eskom (Johannesburg) has awarded Voith Siemens Hydro Power Generation (Heidenheim, Germany), a joint venture of Voith (Heidenheim) and Siemens (Munich, Germany), a contract to equip the Ingula pumped-storage power project being built on the escarpment of the Drakensberg mountain range near Ladysmith in the eastern part of South Africa. A USD 200 million investment will cover all electromechanical equipment with four 342MW motor generators and the complete automation and control system. The project is scheduled to go into operation in 2013. The power house will feed through a 2km headrace tunnel from the upper reservoir on the Bedford Stream, and a similar length tunnel will be built for the tailrace that will lead water into a lower reservoir near the Braamhoek River. A South African-Italian consortium, CMC Mavundla, is working on the main access tunnel contract for completion in 2009. B&E Quanza has the contract for quarrying and sub-base material and Afriscan Holdings has been contracted for water supply, sewage treatment, small access roads and building temporary Eskom offices. During the peak construction period, 2500 people will be on-site. The German and Japanese operating units of Voith Siemens Hydro will be joint partners in the project to design and manufacture the equipment. The motor generators will be supplied from Kawasaki in Japan and the pump-turbines from Heidenheim. The total project will take an investment of more than USD 1 billion, covering the construction of the two dams, underground water tunnels, an underground power house and the infrastructure of access roads and tunnels. Eskom has also received the necessary permits and environmental approvals for another pumped storage scheme, Project Lima, in the country’s northern province of Limpopo. The 1500MW hydropower station is planned for completion in 2014.
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