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Alstom Wins 500 kV Substation Project Using GIS Tech in Tajikistan

Tuesday 7 February 2012

PARIS (Press release) – Alstom Grid has been awarded a contract worth more than €30 million with the Tajikistan National Utility Barq-i-Tojik (برق تاجیک), to design and deliver a 500 kV Switchyard Reconstruction Project to the Nurek Hydroelectric Power Plant (Nurek HPP) – the first ever project to use 500 kV Gas-insulated switchgear (GIS) technology in Central Asia. The project will be financed by a grant from Asian Development Bank.

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The electricity generation, transmission, distribution and control networks make up the electrical grid. The simplest grids link a local generator to homes, but grids can cover whole continents too. Smaller grids have a radial structure with supply lines branching out from a large centralised electricity supplier. This is relatively simple to operate, but if a line goes down, users are cut off.
To ensure reliable supply, most grids use a mesh structure. In this configuration, the power lines of any given electricity supply source are interconnected with those of other sources. If one line has a problem, power can be rerouted from elsewhere while the damaged line is repaired. To plan, operate and manage large interlinked systems, we need control centres where operators monitor grid status. They will adjust to electrical demand variations in real time, using sophisticated network management systems.

Due to a difficult geological environment the site of Nurek HPP’s existing 500 kV Air-insulated substation (AIS) is at risk. The new Alstom Grid turnkey project will replace the 500 kV AIS and install a new 500 kV GIS solution on a more stable site in the area. The Alstom project will assure a safe and reliable electricity supply to support the country’s economic development. By optimizing the flow of energy from Nurek HPP across the grid, it will help to secure future energy sales revenue for Barki Tajik.

Nurek HPP is the largest hydropower station in Central Asia with an installed generation capacity of 3 gigawatts (GW) and produces over 75% of Tajikistan’s electricity. It is a multipurpose project comprising several functions including power generation, the frequency regulation of Central Asia networks and irrigation supply for downstream countries such as Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan.

Tajikistan has enormous hydropower potential. Less than 10% of the nation’s hydroelectric energy resources have been developed, resources that could be producing 40 GW of energy. Making the most efficient use of these resources will be critical to meeting the growing electricity needs of Central and South Asia countries, as well as providing sustainable economic growth.

Grégoire Poux Guillaume, Alstom Grid President declared:

Alstom Grid has been working with Barki Tajik for over ten years, often on rehabilitation projects, essential to reinforcing and stabilizing the country’s power grid. The current project follows a 220 kV GIS €22.4 million replacement project already underway at Nurek HPP. Winning this latest contract at Nurek HPP will significantly reinforce Alstom Grid’s very committed presence in Central Asia.

Scope of work on this turnkey project includes: 500 kV GIS bays, 500 kV XPLE cables, civil works, Protection & Control Systems, Telecom Equipment and Fire Protection System. Commissioning is scheduled for January 2014.

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