Gangelas Mini Hydroelectric Power Plant

Angola, 2013-2015

Construction of a mini hydroelectric power plant of 1.2 MW and execution of 15 KV overhead transmission line, with a total extension of 5.5 km from the power plant to the water pumping station.

Project story

The project was executed on behalf of Angola’s Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries to produce energy even during the region’s dry season, with a pumping system that can be operated when irrigation is required. Located in Chibia, Huíla Province, about 40 km from the provincial capital of Lubango,
the dam is 113 meters long and 32 meters high.

This project allows the irrigation of about 1,500 hectares, promoting the region’s economy through the development of the agriculture sector.

The process

Challenge

We set out to reduce the cost of generating electricity to power the pumps used for irrigating numerous farm fields. This required excavating a 17m-long, 2.5m diameter water channel through the dam’s reinforced concrete in to carry water to drive the generating turbines.

Approach

Special care had to be taken in order not to damage the dam, whose reinforced concrete had been settling since its original construction in the 1960s. To prevent cracks or structural collapse during excavation, we had to employ delicate equipment. As a result, this operation took six months, during which the reservoir was emptied.

Solution

In order to minimize the impact of this work on the people living downriver, we carried out excavation work at the beginning of the wet season, when farmers and the general public are less dependent upon water from the reservoir. We exploited the high water pressure produced at the bottom of the dam to drive the turbines that generate electricity, thus reducing the cost of supplying the region with energy.

Some numbers

SDGs we followed

Mini hydroelectric power plant of

1.2MW & 15KV

overhead transmission line.

Irrigation of about

1.5K ha

In conversation
with Otília Vianney

Otília Vianney is a Local Administrator in Angop (Angola’s News Agency).

This project of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries was designed to store water and produce energy even during region’s dry season. Located in the region of Chibia, in the Southern province of Huíla Province, the dam serves the irrigated area of Gangelas, with a total of about 1,500 hectares, and has the potential to reach additional agricultural areas.

The project will enable a significant increase in the levels of food production in the region and therefore it will contribute to improve the living conditions of the populations.

This mini hydroelectric power plant will contribute to reduce production costs in the irrigated area of Gangelas, also bearing in mind that until now a lot of money has been spent in fuel for generators.

“The project will contribute to improving the population’s living conditions."

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