Andritz Group awarded contract for refurbishment at 289-MW E.B. Campbell station in Canada

Andritz Group, headquartered in Graz, Austria, has announced its biggest hydropower refurbishment contract to date for work in Canada.

According to Andritz on Oct. 31, it was awarded a contract from Saskatchewan utility, SaskPower, valued at more than US$104 million to refurbish six of eight units at the 289-MW E.B. Campbell hydroelectric power station.

E.B. Campbell hydropower station is located on Moose Range No. 486 on the Saskatchewan River near Nipawin, Saskatchewan.

The facility includes an embankment dam and its impoundment creates Tobin Lake. According to SaskPower, the scheme’s first six units were commissioned in 1963 and 1964 and the final two units in 1966.

Andritz said it previously refurbished two units at the facility in 2009.

The scope of work for the remaining six units includes model testing and replacing six Francis turbine generator sets, including auxiliaries as well as mechanical and electrical balance of plant. The Francis runners will have a 4-m diameter and generate 35 MW each, at a rated head of 32 m.

Andritz said the first unit is scheduled to be dismantled in August 2019 and put back into operation in July 2020. The remaining five units will follow at a rate of one per year until 2025.

SaskPower operates seven hydro facilities with a total capacity of about 850 MW in the southern half of Saskatchewan. Inflow is primarily mountain runoff from the South and North Saskatchewan rivers, with releases from the 186-MW Coteau Creek project on Lake Diefenbaker joining the North Saskatchewan River after five to seven days’ travel time. The combined flow then travels through the 255-MW Nipawin and 288-MW E.B. Campbell plants.

In September, HydroWorld.com reported SaskPower halted development of the 50-MW Tazi Twe hydropower project, formerly known as the Elizabeth Falls project, citing a “decline in the projected demand for power” in the province’s northern region.

The $510 million plant had been scheduled for construction near Black Lake, in a region where demand for energy was expected to grow by about 5% annually.

Manitoba Hydro is selling 100 MW of hydroelectric power to SaskPower, as part of a memorandum of understanding signed between the two utilities in 2013.

The 20-year agreement – from 2020 to 2040 – will allow SaskPower to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and increase the renewable portion of its power portfolio. The hydropower purchased will cost roughly the same as natural gas-fired generation, according to SaskPower.

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