International technology Group ANDRITZ has received an order from CH. Karnchang (Lao) Company Ltd. to supply the electromechanical equipment for the Xayaburi run-of-river hydropower station, Lao People’s Democratic Republic. The order value is about 250-300 MEUR and the order is planned to come into force during the next six months. Start-up is scheduled for the end of 2019.
ANDRITZ HYDRO emerged as best bidder in an international tendering process with suppliers from Europe and Asia and will deliver seven Kaplan turbines, each with an output of 175 MW, an additional Kaplan turbine with an output of 68.8 MW, generators and governors, automation systems, and additional equipment. With a nominal capacity of 1,285 MW, the Xayaburi run-of-river hydropower station will have an annual output of 7,406 GWh (equal to the capacity of an average European nuclear power plant) and will provide electricity for around one million households. The size of the hydropower plant is comparable to medium-sized plants, for example in North America. Unlike storage power plants, only small volumes of water are stored in run-of-river hydropower stations.
Due to the shortage or entire lack of other energy resources, Laos has focused for years on expanding hydropower in order to improve the standard of living of its population (half of the population has no electricity supply), stimulate the country’s economic growth, and reduce its dependence on fossil energy resources.
In collaboration with European experts, the Lao government has generally approved the project on the basis of accompanying measures addressing ecological and social aspects. In the course of the further process, the accompanying measures (for example fish ladders) will be defined in detail in cooperation with all stakeholders involved.
The modern technology offered by ANDRITZ HYDRO and the successful supply of electromechanical equipment by ANDRITZ for Nam Theun II hydropower plant in Laos, which went into operation in 2010, were decisive in award of the order. Nam Theun is considered a showcase project worldwide for sustainable hydroelectric power plants and a project in which numerous accompanying social and ecological measures were implemented successfully in compliance with the guidelines of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.