Ciunget-Lotru hydropower aggregate officially reconnected to the National Electricity Grid

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Hydropower aggregate 2 of the Lotru-Ciunget Electric Power Plant, the largest on the inland waterways of Romania and the second largest in level terms after the Iron Gates, was officially inaugurated on Thursday after overhauling works that started in the spring of 2007 ended.

The reconnection of hydropower aggregate 2 of Ciunget-Lotru to the National Electricity Grid was conducted at a ceremony attended by director general of the newly established Electra Holding Constantin Balasoiu, his deputy Traian Oprea, Director of Hidroelectrica Valcea Marian Diaconescu and officials of the Valcea local public administration.

Hydropower aggregate 2 is part of a series of works for complete overhauling of the Lotru¬Ciunget Electric Power Plant. The plant has been included in an overhaul project worth 80 million euros – 60 million euros coming from the World Bank and 20 million from the Romanian Government – that will upgrade the existing Pelton aggregates of a 170 MW power each, the ancillary water, oil and air installations, replace their spherical valves, and repair the water outlet and conduit.

The works started off in 2007, when for the first time the Vidra Reservoir – Romania’s third largest – was emptied. First to come under overhaul was hydropower power aggregate 2. The works contract was awarded to Voith Siemens, which selected Hidroserv and the Energomontaj Hydropower Branch, both of Ramnicu Valcea.
‘The Lotru-Ciunget hydropower complex is by far the most spectacular in Romania.

It comprises more than 150 km of artificial galleries that collect water from the basins of the rivers Lotru, Sad, Oltet and Sebes. Four lakes – Jidoaia, Balindru, Petrimanu and Galbenu – send water to the Vidra Reservoir. From the Vidra Reservoir, water slides down a main conduit nearly 14 km long to the underground Lotru-Ciunget power station,’ Hidroelectrica Director Diaconescu explained.

Hidroelectrica officials said this is one of Europe’s largest hydropower complexes. In the autumn of 2010 hydropower aggregate 1 is expected to be commissioned and aggregate 3 in 2011. The Valcea branch of Hidroelectrica is the company’s largest, with an installed power of 1,117.88 MW and an annual output of 2,769 GWh. Hidroelectrica Valcea also has 11 hydropower sub-stations on the Olt, three on the Lotru, pumping stations and micro-plants.

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