En+ Group has announced it has begun the replacement of six hydraulic units at the it’s Bratsk hydropower plant in Siberia as part of its large-scale "New energy" modernisation programme.
The works will see all 18 impellers replaced, with 12 already having been replaced during the earlier stages of the modernisation programme in 2007-2010 and 2014-2017.
The total investment for this stage of the project is more than 1.5 billion roubles and the replacement works are planned to take place from 2021 to 2026.
Russian specialists have already completed several months of testing on the new hydro turbine model, as well as tests on its operation in various load modes. Turbine and impeller models of the hydraulic unit were specially developed and manufactured at a scale of 1:10 for the tests.
Specialists from Bratsk HPP and LLC EuroSibEnergo-Hydrogeneration oversaw laboratory tests. These included a sample view of measuring transducers, tests to determine the efficiency and power of the units, cavitation and acceleration tests, video surveillance of the flow structure, and random tests on individual elements of the hydro turbine’s flow part. These tests suggest that the efficiency of the new hydro turbine will be 96.51%, which is almost 5% higher than the current performance of existing hydroelectric units.
"We are continuing our work under the “New Energy” programme at all of our hydroelectric power plants in 2021. The results obtained during the first stages of the programme have already justified our investment in the project,” said Mikhail Hardikov, head of En+ Group's energy sector. “All 12 new impellers at the Bratsk HPP have already demonstrated improvements in all key areas. Their efficiency has increased, and the HPP has been able to generate additional electricity without increasing its water consumption. The impellers that we will install this year are also designed to increase efficiency at the HPP."
En+ Group’s large-scale modernisation project “New energy" has been implemented at the Angara-Yenisei cascade hydropower plants which include Ust-Ilimsk, Bratsk, Irkutsk and Krasnoyarsk plants. “New energy” is a key investment project of En+ Group’s energy sector, which is worth 21 billion roubles, launched in 2007. The project will run until 2046.
One of the core priorities of the project is to improve the reliability and safety of all stations. The comprehensive replacement not only includes the main equipment like hydraulic units and impellers, but also auxiliary equipment will be carried out under the programme.
It is expected that, from 2022, En+ Group’s Siberian hydroelectric power plants will increase their production of environmentally friendly electricity by 2 billion kWh due to the programme. This will reduce the Group's greenhouse gas emissions by 2.3 million tons per year, which will also have a positive impact on Siberian ecology.