After extensive damage from cyclone Evan in 2012, several hydropower stations in Samoa were refurbished, and two new stations were built.
Vortex Hydro was awarded the design, supply, installation and commissioning of the mechanical and electric systems.
MTL designed the penstocks, intake reservoir chamber, power house structures, and associated structures for the new hydropower schemes. New pipelines for penstocks were designed and supplied by Maskell.
Access to parts of the scheme was very constrained. The design had to account for the restricted accessibility for construction and for limited construction methods with available plant in Samoa.
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).