Tags Posts tagged with "hydroelectric"


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The overall renewable power capacity in Brazil is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6% from 31 GW in 2018 to 60.8GW in 2030, according to GlobalData.

GlobalData’s latest report: “Brazil Power Market Outlook to 2030, Update 2019 – Market Trends, Regulations, and Competitive Landscape” reveals that increased renewable energy auctions, promotion of hybrid renewable energy projects and other government initiatives such as tax incentives, smart metering, renewable energy targets and favorable grid access policies for renewable energy are likely to result in renewable expansion by 2030.

Between 2019 and 2030, solar PV and onshore wind segments are expected to grow at CAGRs of 14% and 6%, respectively. The significant rise in these two technologies will result in renewable energy being the second largest contributor to the country’s energy mix by 2030.

The connection of over 25,000 power systems, mostly solar PV systems to the Brazilian grid in mid-2018 under the net metering scheme, further underpins the renewable growth pattern over the forecast period.

The main challenges for Brazil’s power sector are its overdependence on cheap hydropower for base-load capacity and lack of a robust power grid infrastructure. In 2018, hydropower accounted for 62.7% of the country’s total installed capacity. In case of a drought, depletion of dam reservoirs could result in power shortages and switching over to costly thermal power which will increase the electricity prices.

In the long term, hydropower capacity is expected to decline and be compensated with increased renewable power capacity. On the other hand, thermal and renewable capacities are slated to increase and contribute 28% and 18%, respectively of the installed capacity in 2030.

Brazil is moving towards a balanced energy mix as it prepares to double its non-hydro renewable power capacity by 2030. With an almost 10GW increase in thermal power capacity by 2030 compared to 2018, the country is on course to better manage peak demand, reduce dependence on hydropower and maintain a healthy grid.

Source: Globaldata

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ABB is partnering with Enel Green Power to deliver innovative predictive maintenance solutions that will lower maintenance costs and transform the performance, reliability and energy efficiency of its hydropower plants throughout Italy.


The three-year contract will enable 33 of Enel Green Power’s hydroelectric plants, comprised of about 100 units, to move from hours-based maintenance to predictive and condition-based maintenance, leveraging the ABB Ability™ Asset Performance Management solution. With operations in five continents, the Enel Group’s renewable business line, Enel Green Power, is a global leader in the green energy sector, with a managed capacity of more than 43 GW.

Collaborating closely since early 2018, the two companies have jointly developed and tested predictive maintenance and advanced solutions (PresAGHO) via a pilot on five Enel plants in Italy and Spain, including Presenzano, a 1,000 MW plant near Naples.

The new contract includes digital software solutions and services that will provide analysis of over 190,000 signals and the deployment of about 800 digital asset models, aimed at improving plant operational performance, reducing unplanned failures and enabling more efficient planned maintenance practices through predictive maintenance. The integration is expected to yield savings in fleet maintenance costs and increase plant productivity.

Representatives from ABB and Enel Green Power presented their progress to date at the HydroPower Plant Digitalization Forum in Vienna in June 2019.

Source: ABB

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The Qinghai Province, located in Northwest China, has successfully run on 100 per cent renewable energy for seven continuous days, as part of a trial conducted by the State Grid Corporation of China. The trial – which ran from 17 June to 23 June – saw the entire province generate all of its power needs with clean energy sources, including solar, wind and hydro power. The trial in the Qinghai Province – which has a population of around 6 million people – was designed to prove that fossil fuels will not be required in the future.

Quan Shenming, General Manager of Qinghai Electric Power Corporation, a subsidiary of State Grid Corporation, said: “Being the first trial of this kind in the country and a major step in the transformation of energy supply, it will be of great importance in promoting the use of clean energy in China in a sustainable and effective way.”


During the seven day period electricity use was 1.100 GWh, the equivalent of 535,000 tonnes of coal. Hydro contributed as much as 72.3 per cent of the electricity, with new energy sources including wind and solar providing the balance.

Qinghai has ample resources for solar and hydro power generation. As of May 2017, Qinghai’s power grid had a total installed capacity of 23.4 GW, around 82.8 per cent of which came from solar, wind and hydro power.

According to the provincial 13th Five-Year Plan, the Qinghai Province plans to expand its solar and wind capacity to 35 GW by 2020 and supply 110.000 GWh of clean electricity every year to central and eastern parts of China, Xinhua News said.

China plans to invest 2.5 trillion yuan ($366 billion) in renewable energy technologies by 2020, creating more than 13 million jobs, according to the National Energy Administration (NEA). In the first quarter of 2017, China installed an impressive 7.21 GW of new solar capacity. Total installed solar capacity now stands at around 85 GW – according to the NEA.

Source: Climate Action

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As the cost of clean technology continues to fall, the world added record levels of renewable energy capacity in 2016, at an investment level 23% lower than the previous year, according to new research published by UN Environment, the Frankfurt School-UNEP Collaborating Centre and Bloomberg New Energy Finance. “Global Trends in Renewable Energy Investment 2017” finds that wind, solar, biomass and waste-to-energy, geothermal, small hydro and marine sources added 138.5 GW to global power capacity in 2016, up 8% from the 127.5 GW added the year before. The added generating capacity roughly equals that of the world’s 16 largest existing power-producing facilities combined.

Investment in renewables capacity was roughly double that in fossil fuel generation; the corresponding new capacity from renewables was equivalent to 55% of all new power, the highest to date. The proportion of electricity coming from renewables, excluding large hydro, rose from 10.3% to 11.3%. This prevented the emission of an estimated 1.7 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide.


The total investment was US$241.6bn (excluding large hydro), the lowest since 2013. This was largely a result of falling costs: the average dollar capital expenditure per megawatt for solar PV, onshore wind and offshore wind dropped by over 10%, improving the competitiveness of those technologies. While much of the drop in financing was due to reduced technology costs, the report documented a slowdown in China, Japan and some emerging markets during the course of the year, for a variety of reasons.

New investment in solar in 2016 totalled US$113.7bn, down 34% from the all-time high in 2015, mainly due to sharp cost reductions – and to real slowdowns in activity in two of the largest markets, China and Japan. India saw the construction of the Ramanathapuram solar complex in Tamil Nadu, billed as the world’s largest ever PV project at some 648 MW.

Wind followed closely behind solar, at US$112.5bn of investment globally, down 9% despite the boom in offshore projects. However, while solar capacity additions rose in the year to a record 75 GW, sharply up from 56 GW, wind capacity additions fell back to 54 GW in 2016 from the previous year’s high of 63 GW.

The smaller sectors of renewable energy had mixed fortunes in terms of investment last year. Biofuels fell 37% to US$2.2bn, the lowest for at least 13 years; biomass and waste-to-energy held steady at US$6.8bn and small hydro at US$3.5bn; while geothermal rallied 17% to US$2.7bn and marine edged down 7% to US$194m.

Investment by type of economy

Renewable energy investment in 2016 showed contrasting trends between regions, as well as between the leading countries. The relative shares of the main regions in global investment in 2016 were as follows: China accounted for 32% of all financing for renewable energy, excluding large hydro, and Europe 25%. The US represented another 19% and Asia-Oceania, excluding China and India, stood at 11%. India. Other Americas made up 4% with Brazil, the Middle East and Africa each at 3%.

Renewable energy investment in developing countries fell 30% to US$117bn, while in developed economies, investment dropped 14% to US$125bn.

The ‘big three’ developing economies of China, India and Brazil saw a combined 28% setback in dollar investment to US$94.7bn, but this disguises different trends in each. China was again the biggest location for dollar commitments, but its total of US$78.3bn was down 32% from 2015 and the lowest since 2013. This broke a 12-year sequence of rising year-on-year investment. China also invested US$4.1bn in offshore wind, its highest figure to date. India recorded US$9.7bn in 2016, equalling 2015 and its average since 2010. Brazil bumps along from year to year without much sign of an upwards trend, and in fact last year’s figure of US$6.8bn was down 4% and the second-lowest since 2006.

Mexico, Chile, Uruguay, South Africa and Morocco all saw falls of 60% or more, due to slower than expected growth in electricity demand and delays to auctions and financing. Jordan was one of the few new markets to buck the trend, with investment there rising 148% to US$1.2bn.

Among developed economies, the US saw commitments slip 10% to US$46.4bn, roughly in line with its average since 2011, although 10% down on the 2015 record, as developers took their time to build out projects to benefit from the five-year extension of the tax credit system.

Investment in Europe has stabilised in recent years after falling from peaks of above US$100bn per year during the German and Italian solar booms of 2010-11. In 2016, it totalled US$59.8bn, up 3% on the previous year, led by the UK (US$24bn) and Germany (US$13.2bn). Two of the main features were the financing of offshore wind projects and the new equity raised by Innogy as it floated on the Frankfurt stock market. Offshore wind (US$25.9bn) dominated Europe’s investment, up 53% thanks to mega-arrays such as the 1.2 GW Hornsea project in the North Sea, estimated to cost US$5.7bn.

The most hopeful sign in 2016 for the future greening of the global electricity system was a succession of winning bids for solar and wind in auctions around the world, at tariffs that would have seemed inconceivably low only a few years ago. The records set last year were US$29.10 per MWh for solar in Chile and US$30 per MWh for onshore wind in Morocco, but there were other eye-catchingly low outcomes to auctions from Dubai to India and from Zambia to Mexico and Peru.

Source: UN Environment, the Frankfurt School-UNEP Collaborating Centre and Bloomberg New Energy Finance

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The global hydropower market is set to increase from $70.9 billion in 2017 to $86.2 billion by 2025, representing a compound annual growth rate of 2.5%, according to research and consulting firm GlobalData.

The company’s latest report states that a major boost in investment is expected to result in an increased number of installations, led by countries such as China, Brazil, and India, as well as several emerging countries.


Anchal Agarwal, Power Analyst for GlobalData, explains: “Policy support and environmental concerns for clean energy generation are important factors driving the global hydropower market. The recently adopted UN Sustainable Development Goals, for example, which supersede the millennium development goals, include a special goal related to energy which encourages the share of renewable energy by 2030.”

Global power demand is also pushing the market forward, and is expected to increase from around 21.7 million GWh in 2017 to over 27 million GWh by 2025. Meeting this demand will require an increase in the pace of capacity additions in order to fulfil peak demand requirements, meet emission control, and provide the affordable power.

Large hydropower plants are the major source for providing the baseload power, while pumped storage plants meet the peak power demand. Cumulative global hydropower installations were 1,211.3 GW in 2016, and are expected to reach 1,691.8 GW by 2025.

Agarwal continues: “In terms of individual countries, China will continue to dominate market share, with installed hydropower capacity set to rise from 341 GW in 2016 to 442 GW by 2020. In order to achieve its carbon reduction goals, China is exploring low-carbon generation technologies, including nuclear, wind, and solar power.”

According to GlobalData, China is pursuing large-scale projects including the 10.2 GW Wudongde plant, which scheduled for completion by 2020, as well as smaller projects in more remote regions, such as Tibet.

Source: GlobalData

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The demand for renewable electricity in Europe, documented with Guarantees of Origin (GOs), has grown briskly in 2016 – up 5% from 2015 and reaching nearly 370 TWh, according to the statistics from the Association of Issuing Bodies (AIB). Behind this growth are thousands of businesses and millions of households in numerous European countries purchasing renewable electricity documented with Guarantees of Origin.

Much of the demand is driven by an increased sense of urgency among leading international businesses in contributing to combating climate change – by switching from fossil based power to clean, renewable energy,” says Tom Lindberg, Managing Director in ECOHZ


This global backdrop has inspired leading companies across various industries to define a clear sustainability agenda as critical to their future competitiveness. The last two years have seen several initiatives arise, many with similar goals of securing access to renewables to power all operations, in all corners of the world. The most far-reaching initiatives are WeMeanBusiness and the RE100. The RE100 initiative now has 87 corporate members that have all publicly pledged to consume 100% renewable energy. A large majority of companies have committed to achieving this by 2020.

Based on recent statistics from the AIB the European growth trend continues in 2016. From 2011 to 2016 the market experienced an annual growth (CAGR) of 12,5%.

The AIB statistics only include Guarantees of Origin based on the EECS standard. EECS GOs are tradable across national borders, among countries that have joined AIB, and that are connected to AIB’s electronic GO hub.

Main developments

• Germany, Switzerland, Sweden and Holland are still the largest markets for renewable purchases in Europe. Holland’s market continues to grow, at a faster pace than the rest, and nearly reached 50 TWh purchased in 2016. The German market is still the largest in Europe, but its rapid growth driven by demand has halted. Purchased volumes in 2016 will likely be in line with the 2015 figures – 85-87 TWh.
• Italy and France: both latecomers in the market continue to show robust growth, and their markets are increasing in significance.
• Spain joined AIB in 2016, and although it was off to a slow start, has shown impressive speed in providing new volumes of renewables to the marketplace – issuing nearly 50 TWh.
• Although the UK is now the only remaining large renewable producer not actively participating in the European market, its new renewable energy policy frameworks allow for imports of certain European EECS GO for domestic use. This has contributed to the overall demand growth in 2016, and shows the importance of having the UK as a full AIB member.
• The supply of solar and wind power documented with EECS GO, grew by 300% and 50% respectively – providing nearly 70 TWh to the marketplace. Hydropower still dominates the market with an approximate 75% market share, but growth has slowed.

There are still European markets with national systems that have yet to adopt the EECS standard, and that do not participate in the Pan-European market place. These markets total more than 200 TWh of purchased renewable power – thus pushing the actual market volume renewable toward the 600 TWh mark for 2016. This is 50% of all renewable power production in Europe.

Source: ECOHZ

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This past year has been extraordinary for renewable energy; the Ren21 Renewables 2016 Global Status Report shows the largest global capacity additions seen to date. As investment in solar, wind and hydro continues to increase and new technologies come to market, the industry’s service needs are rapidly changing. And, in an industry where the life cycle of a solution is critical, service is becoming an increasingly important part of operations.

Investors are looking more into service agreements to ensure a project’s bankability. If a problem arises on a wind turbine deep at sea or in the middle of a solar farm in the desert, the speed at which the issue is resolved is crucial, and that’s why operators from all sectors are looking for a team of qualified, experienced engineers and technical personnel to provide them with worldwide field support at all times. It comes with no surprise that service is now an important piece in the whole package provided to customers during the bidding process.


Alex Michel, Renewables Service Leader, GE’s Power Conversion business discuss the key trends driving change in the renewables services sector:

1 The requirement for a one-stop shop for services

Owners are looking more and more towards one-stop service providers that have the ability to service components from any manufacturer. This trend is rising as operators see the cost- and time-saving benefits it can bring. Take solar farms for example, owners and operators don’t want to have to pay for one team to take care of the inverters and another to service the substation. Simplified service interface and management, lower cost and streamlined responsibility make them look only for one quote for their overall portfolio.

It’s not only operators that are seeing the benefits, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are acknowledging the opportunities that come with providing a full life cycle service. This has been demonstrated by the recent acquisitions of independent service providers by large OEMs.

Both owners and operators recognize that, given the already existing infrastructure, it is the actual OEMs that can provide a better level of service, as they ultimately have the complete capabilities available from basic maintenance up to obsolescence management and complex fleet engineering. Taking this into consideration, working with companies such as GE, who have experience across the entire value chain and can provide and service the complete electrical equipment, presents a distinct advantage to operators.

Fast industry growth has also meant the renewables sector has seen the rise and fall of many startups. It’s not unusual for operations to include components manufactured by a company which no longer exists. And while this can be challenging for many, it’s leading OEMs with capable service teams that have an enduring presence in the industry, specialist expertise and flexible capabilities to be preferred in the market.

2 The challenge of maintaining operational know-how

The service industry is facing a global skills gap. With the demand for service engineers continuing to increase as installed renewable capacity rises, maintaining operational know-how is critical. While many firms are able to recruit graduates, provide them with field experience and develop them into valuable resources, staff retention is more difficult; particularly as engineers are in such high demand and are regularly headhunted. This retention of knowledge is becoming even more crucial as multi-brand service becomes the norm, as it is leading the level of knowledge needed by service engineers to be greater than ever before.

Service providers must find smart ways to maintain know-how within the operational team. It’s also a new challenge for companies to ensure that their engineers have the necessary training on competitor products. To counter this, the ability of service providers to manage sub-contractors or to be able to immediately form a core team who has the competence is essential.

While it may not seem immediately obvious, software can be used to retain knowledge and experience. For example, by building up a comprehensive database—keeping a better record of service work and customer feedback, and embedding service processes into software tools, expertise can be retained, repeated and scaled across similar renewables sites after the personnel leaves. Engineers are problem fixers after all, and having access to historical data and information can help to inform future decisions and solve current problems.

While we cannot solve the global skills gap overnight, the good news is that the perception of service is changing, and it has become an attractive sector for young talented recruits who are ready to take on a challenge.

3 The increasing involvement of service engineers in the product development process

This change in perception has allowed service to advance its position in the value chain. Whereas previously, engineers would be trained once products were ready for market, they’re increasingly being involved much earlier in the development process.

This is due to the fact that companies focus on metrics such as Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) or Levelized Cost of Energy (LCoE) when driving growth. And, it is widely known that to achieve the lowest TCO, OEMs must look not only at the upfront cost of equipment, but also the continued running costs. It is the optimized combination of the two that would yield the lowest TCO. And in order to achieve this optimum point and reduce continued service costs, service field experience and data is necessary.

In GE’s Berlin factory for example, service engineers are already involved from the early design phase. Leveraging from their valuable field experience, they are able to define requirements on new products’ serviceability and participate in the prototype commissioning. Not only does this ensure the best form of product development, but it also allows engineers to build knowledge and expertise from the offset and allows those involved in the product’s creation to train others once the product is released.

4 The rise of digital technologies

With a lack of engineers in the global market, using remote monitoring technology can allow a core engineering team to monitor plant performance and make decisions remotely, reducing the number of engineers needed on any given site. This is particularly important for offshore wind farms and certain solar plants, where qualified engineers are very hard to find and the locations are extremely remote.

Digital software analytics can also help reduce maintenance costs. For example, by building a “digital twin”—a mathematical model of any piece of equipment—OEMs can subject the model to the same operational conditions as the real equipment, allowing them to estimate the remaining lifetime of the components in the process. This allows OEMs to spot anomalies and therefore potential issue before they even arise, helping to reduce unplanned downtime.

This use of remote monitoring and software analytics enables moderators to move to a process of predictive maintenance and prognostics, whereby they carry out maintenance only when it is required, reducing a plant’s operational risk and saving the industry significant maintenance costs.

Understanding the vast benefits that come with predictive maintenance, GE created the Predix platform, which allows service engineers to analyze data and deliver real-time insights to optimize industrial infrastructure and operations. This remote monitoring offers GE’s customers access to the best expert in any given field, no matter where in the world they are based.

While the industry may be changing, the importance of service will only continue to grow. Through working with a global partner to deliver engineering and service capabilities, firms can invest their money and employees’ time towards innovating and identifying new products, solutions and services to bring to market, safe in the knowledge that if a problem arises upon a wind turbine or solar farm, it will be fixed by a trusted partner in the field, quickly.

Source: GE

Once again, Ingeteam, the leader in operation and maintenance services in Mexico, is to take part in the most important event for the country’s wind power sector: Mexico WindPower 2016, to be held on the 24th and 25h February at the Banamex Centre in Mexico City. During the Fair, Ingeteam will showcase its latest advances in the Integrated Management and Advanced Analysis of Wind Farms. Visitors will also get the opportunity to view the company’s innovative developments in energy storage systems and SCADA solutions.

This event coincides with the announcement that Ingeteam Service has been awarded the operation and maintenance services for the Tacotan and Trigomil hydropower plants, both located in the state of Jalisco. This is the company’s first contract in the hydropower sector in Mexico.

With these new contracts, Ingeteam Service is responsible for the maintenance of 15 MW of the total installed power at the plant, thereby diversifying its business in Mexico with its entry into the hydropower sector.

The company has been present in Mexico since 1998, where it has positioned itself as the leading company in the provision of wind farm operating and maintenance services, providing services to half a thousand wind turbines, with a total maintained power of 1.4 GW.

Ingeteam is also the leading company in the solar PV sector, managing more than half the solar power installed in the country through its inverters. In fact, on the 19th February, the president of Mexico, Enrique Peña Nieto, inaugurated the SEDENA photovoltaic project in Nuevo Leon, at the Ministry of Defence. This major project, which has 472 solar panels, incorporates Ingeteam inverters.
Through its Business Unit, Power Grid Automation PGA, and the Unit’s Technical and Sales offices in Mexico CIty, Ingeteam continues to strengthen its position in the Mexican wind power market, with its latest project PE INGENIO 49.5 MW on the Isthmus of Teuhantepec, reaching a share of more than 950 MW.

The company has more than 300 employees in Mexico, with offices in Oaxaca, in Juchitán de Zaragoza, dedicated to the provision of O&M services to wind and PV farms, and another office in Monterrey. It also has an office in Mexico City, dedicated to the distribution of equipment and the execution of projects for the automation and protection of distribution power networks and substations for the transmission of renewable energies.

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) committed $4.4 billion for projects that target climate change adaptation and mitigation, renewable energy and environmental sustainability in 2014, an increase of $1.5 billion over the previous year.

This investment represents one-third of the Banks’ lending for the year, surpassing its institutional target of 25 percent, according to the IDB’s annual Sustainability Report unveiled here today.

The Report highlights the Bank’s sustainability performance in 2014, both in achieving institutional sustainability investment targets, as well as through a series of stories about the projects it is undertaking in its member countries.

Projects highlighted in the Report include a new model for sustainable hydropower in Peru and the transformation of an urban landscape with new green spaces in Brazil.

The Sustainability Report also details the Banks work to implement a new sustainable infrastructure strategy and vision—one that sees a shift from infrastructure being a fixed asset to infrastructure that is planned, built, and maintained as a service for people. Other examples of the Bank’s work with member countries highlighted in the publication include improving environmental and social standards in wind projects in Uruguay, and a sustainable tourism program in Belize.

Additionally in 2014, in partnership with the Harvard Zofnass Program, three infrastructure projects in the region that demonstrated efforts to integrate sustainability into planning, design, construction, and operation, were recognized with the Infrastructure 360 Award.

The IDB has also continued to expand its activities through special initiatives focused on different elements of sustainability in Latin America and the Caribbean. In 2014, fourteen cities joined the Emerging and Sustainable Cities Initiative, which helps to identify actions required and to leverage critical funds that help cities on a path to long-term urban sustainability.

In addition, the Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Program, now in its second year, provided funding in 2014 for 10 new projects which integrate biodiversity and ecosystem services into key economic sectors, such as infrastructure, agriculture, energy, and tourism.

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Iberdrola Ingeniería has begun constructing the Votkinskaya substation, the first major project within the electricity transmission grid business in Russia, after being awarded a contract worth €32 million by RusHydro, the world’s second largest hydropower company.
This facility will become the largest electricity transmission enclave in central Russia and among the most important in the country. The substation has been designed for receiving energy generated by the hydropower plant of the same name, which boasts a power capacity of 1,020 MW, and supplying power to a million residents living in the regions of Perm, Udmurt, Kirov, Bashkir and Sverdlovsk.
Iberdrola Ingeniería will erect this new infrastructure on the same site as the current substation that was constructed in 1963 and, while still operating, has become obsolete.
This IBERDROLA subsidiary will tackle numerous challenges with this project, since it will construct a 500 kV substation for the first time and do so in extreme weather conditions, as temperatures that could drop as low as -38º, while meeting strict deadlines: the substation should be operative by the end of this year.
The new Votkinskaya substation will be housed inside a building and equipped with cutting-edge technology in GIS (Gas Insulated Switchgear), which is the most modern, secure and efficient on the market. This enables the facilities to not only take up 90% less space than conventional models while better adapting to the environment but also to incorporate the latest in technological advances.
IBERDROLA INGENIERÍA will construct these facilities on the basis of the experience acquired commissioning state-of-the-art substations of this sort throughout the last 10 years in Spain. This experience has made the company a universal benchmark in technological renovations in the electricity distribution sector.
For this Votkinskaya turnkey project, the IBERDROLA subsidiary will handle the engineering, storage, construction and commissioning of the infrastructure. The work will be undertaken with the old substation still in service, adding a certain degree of complexity to the work and requiring the establishment of a series of stages to hand control of the original station over to the new one.
It is also worth mentioning the elevated level of quality required for this project by RusHydro, a Russian power utility with 36,005 MW installed power in this country, with nine hydropower stations located along the Volga-Kama river, wind farms and dozens of mini-hydropower stations.

SAJ Electric