Tajikistan Hydropower Plant Gets GE Upgrade

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KnowESG_Tajikistan Hydropower Plant Gets GE Upgrade
Image courtesy of GE

GE Vernova's Hydro Power division has achieved a significant milestone in its endeavour to upgrade the Qairokkum hydropower plant in Tajikistan.

The project involves the refurbishment of six Kaplan turbine and generator units, and the first unit, with an original capacity of 21 MW, has been successfully transformed into a formidable 29 MW powerhouse, now seamlessly integrated into the grid. Upon completion of this ambitious initiative, the plant's combined capacity will soar to an impressive 174 MW.

Sitting gracefully on the Syr Darya River for over six decades, this venerable hydropower plant stands as the sole energy source for approximately 5,00,000 residents in Tajikistan's northwestern Sughd province.

The comprehensive refurbishment efforts promise not only to extend the plant's operational life but also to bolster its ability to supply cleaner and more sustainable energy to the nation.

In collaboration with Barki Tojik, GE was handpicked to oversee the extensive overhaul of the six Kaplan units at the state-owned Qairokkum hydropower plant. The project encompasses the enhancement of turbines, generators, and various components of the plant infrastructure.

Leading this transformation is GE Vernova, in partnership with Cobra, a division of ACS Group, a prominent Spanish firm. The ambitious endeavour is slated for full modernisation by mid-2025.

With a substantial 90% of Tajikistan's electricity sourced from hydropower, it is paramount to adapt both existing and future hydropower assets to meet evolving operational needs. Qairokkum serves as a pioneering example of how a plant can elevate its performance through comprehensive rehabilitation. Leveraging improved turbine designs, the plant not only boosts energy production but also addresses fluctuations in regional water flow.

Bodo Mayer, Hydro Power EMEA Leader at GE Vernova, emphasised the importance of enhancing climate resilience in hydropower plants, asserting its significance in advancing the global energy transition.

Mayer expressed pride in contributing to this project and underscored the monumental achievement of the first unit's rehabilitation, which sets the stage for the impending transformation of the remaining five units.

Hydropower projects inherently possess remarkable longevity, offering the promise of renewable energy for generations to come. With regular maintenance, these facilities can operate for more than a century, obviating the need for extensive dam reconstruction—a testament to their enduring significance in the realm of sustainable energy.

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Source: GE

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