Ruacana output to increase by 347MW

16 May 2014 11:20am
RUACANA, 16 MAY (NAMPA) – NamPower is currently busy with the most important part of the Ruacana Hydro-electric Power Station’s N.dollars 45 million refurbishment project, which is to upgrade the blades of the old three turbines here.
During a media briefing at Ruacana on Wednesday, the manager of this power station, Benedictus Mingeli explained that the aim of the current short-term critical supply project is to improve the maximum capacity, as well as the efficiency of the turbines.
“After the commissioning of the project, each turbine will have an output of 85 Megawatts (MW) - five MW more, compared to the current 80MW,” he noted.
This means that the 332MW output of the station will increase by 15MW at full capacity during December and June, which is the base-load/mid-merit period.
The project will also allow the power station to run for a longer period during the dry season of the year, especially during the July and November (mid-merit/peaking) period, said Mingeli.
“As part of our long and ongoing efforts, we are looking at maintaining and modernising the plant to make sure that it stays reliable, effective and efficient,” he added.
NamPower also hopes to replace two blades or runners - as they are also called - this year during July and November when the water levels of the Kunene River are low, and the last turbine during next year’s mid-merit/peaking period to speed up the maintenance process.
“We will be doing this project during the dry season of the year when we don’t have enough water to run all four machines,” the official stated.
The old three turbines have been operational since the inception of the power station in 1977.
The new and fourth 92MW turbine of the Ruacana Hydro-electric Power Station, which was initiated in October 2007 at a cost of N.dollars 750 million, is currently operational since March 2012.
Fifty per cent of Namibia’s electricity is generated by the Ruacana Hydro-electric power station.