The Ingula plant is being built about 350km south east of Johannesburg, on the border between KwaZulu-Natal and the Free State. It is scheduled to be operational in 2013.

Impregilo said that the construction contract was worth approximately Euro600M (US$795M), and it has a 40% stake in the JV.

The project involves linking the Bedford Stream upper reservoir to the powerhouse via an approximately 2km long headrace tunnel. The water will be discharged to a lower reservoir through a tailrace tunnel of about the same length.

Construction works on the scheme include caverns, tunnels, adits, shafts and penstocks, installation of the pump-turbines, and construction of the dams for the upper and lower reservoirs.

Last year, Eskom awarded Voith Siemens Hydro Power Generation the contract to supply electro-mechanical equipment to the project. The plant will be supplied with four pump-turbines, each of 342MW rated output, in a contract worth approximately Euro140M (US$186M).

From today, Voith Siemens Hydro Power Geneartion – which is a joint venture – operates under the new brand name of Voith Hydro.