Vortex supplied the mechanical & electrical package, comprising 2x 400 kW Pelton turbines, new generators, control systems. MTL was the structural designer for this plant. The design scope included a steel framed powerhouse, reinforced masonry control building and a reinforced concrete surge chamber. All elements had to be designed to resist seismic and cyclonic wind loads. Maskell designed and supplied the pipelines for the penstocks.
The challenges of building HydroPower infrastructure in remote locations poses many challenges. Site access, accommodation & catering, access to raw materials, complex shipping routes & difficulty of landing, lack of electrical supply and very importantly—engagement with local people living in the vicinity of the work site. The members of the coalition are very experienced and successful in working in these situations.
After Cyclone Evan in 2012 devastated several of the vital hydropower systems in Western Samoa, the contract for repair, refurbishment and upgrade was granted to members of the NZ HydroPower Coalition. New stations were built, and repairs/ upgrades undertaken on existing stations. In a great example of local community involvement, 45 Magiagi village locals were employed in the construction of the pipe system and concrete structures, for the three new/upgraded hydropower systems in their area.
An important part of building a new power station is enabling local businesses to participate in the project work, and then for the local people to be well trained in the operation and maintenance of the station equipment.
Pipeline construction in a wide variety of terrain is challenging and expensive. The combined experience of Maskell, MTL and Vortex can deliver a highly effective water delivery system, with above ground and buried pipelines as required. Members of the coalition have also worked in challenging locations, including the underground powerhouse at Omanawa Falls (New Zealand).