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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Nam Theun 2 delivers first local electricity

The Nam Theun 2 Hydroelectric Project has made its first delivery of electricity for domestic use in Laos .




According to a press release from the Nam Theun 2 Power Company (NTPC), the project began delivering electricity for domestic use on August 6, 2009, when the first of two Pelton Unit turbines was successfully synchronised with the local substations of Electricité du Laos (EDL).

Engineers from the project and EDL watched the turbine produce 2 megawatts (MW) of power during the first test.

The electricity was transmitted to the EDL substation at Mahaxay and then on for consumption by local customers in Khammuan province. Further tests were conducted the following day, with delivery rising to full power.

The Nam Theun 2 Power Station houses two Pelton Units, each able to deliver 42 MW when running at full power output. The project operator, the NTPC, will supply 300 gigawatt hours of electricity per annum to EDL from next year.

This accounts for 5 percent of the project's output, with the remaining 95 percent to be exported to Thailand via a separate generation and delivery system.

According to the Director of EDL's Transmission and Substation Department Mr Khene Thepvongsa, this power is very important for Laos and for people in the project area.

“When the two Nam Theun 2 Pelton generators are available for full power delivery, Khammuan province will be able to stop importing electricity from Thailand ,” said Mr Khene.

The province currently imports 55-60 MW from across the Mekong .

Mr Khene said the team of EDL engineers were happy to be on hand to see the first domestic power come from Nam Theun 2. “The NT2 engineers were able to smooth some initial problems on the test and then proved to us that the unit can run at full capacity” he said.

EDL purchased this test energy from NTPC at a special low rate and hopes to start buying electricity regularly from September.

The second Pelton generating unit at the NT2 Power Station is expected to come on line in November 2009.

NTPC successfully tested its first export of power to Thailand in June.

NT2 is located in Khammuan province. The 1,070 MW project is the biggest power project in Laos and will generate around US$2 billion of revenue for the country during its first 25 years of operation. According to Nam Theun 2's website, construction began in the middle of 2005.

By Times Reporters
(Latest Update August 11, 2009)