Penstock installation task reassigned to Austrian companyThe hydro-mechanical contractor for the Upper Tamakoshi Hydropower Project has agreed to sub-contract part of the work to another company as it is running late.
Published at : December 25, 2018
Updated at : December 25, 2018 09:15
The hydro-mechanical contractor for the Upper Tamakoshi Hydropower Project has agreed to sub-contract part of the work to another company as it is running late.
Indian company Texamo will let Andritz Hydro, the Austrian contractor implementing the electro-mechanical component, do some of the work, according to Upper Tamakoshi Hydropower Company which is developing the 456 MW project located in eastern Nepal. Upper Tamakoshi Hydropower Company is a subsidiary of the Nepal Electricity Authority.
“The Indian contractor agreed in principle to let Andritz Hydro install a major part of the high pressure steel penstock pipes,” said Bigyan Raj Shrestha, the government appointed project chief of Upper Tamakoshi Hydropower Company. “We will sign a tripartite agreement with Texamo and Andritz in this regard by January 7, 2019.”
Shrestha added that the hydropower company would not incur any financial burden from the contract transfer as the Indian company will pay Andritz for the extra work.
The project office convinced Texamo to reassign some of the work to another contractor after it found that the Indian contractor was not qualified to execute the crucial task of installing the penstock pipes at the power plant. The penstock pipe conveys water from the reservoir to the turbines to generate electricity, and fitting such pipes is considered to be one of the most challenging tasks of the hydro-mechanical component.
“As terminating the contract with Texamo and hiring another firm for the job would take a lot of time, we asked the Indian company to pass the difficult task to another contractor,” said Shrestha. While Texamo was working sluggishly, the Austrian contractor has been carrying out the work on a war footing, according to the project office.
The 456 MW national pride project plans to start commercial generation of electricity by mid-November 2019 after revising its completion deadline for the third time. The project has faced cost overruns due to the delay. It was initially planned to be built at a cost of Rs35 billion, but the final bill is now expected to reach Rs50 billion. The total cost will reach Rs70 billion if interest is added.
The project is considered to be a model project which is being developed with domestic resources and a high level of participation by project-affected locals and the general public.
Upper Tamakoshi is a strategic project designed to end the country’s perennial power crisis. After the Upper Tamakoshi roars into life, Nepal is projected to have surplus energy at least during the wet season, and the Nepal Electricity Authority will be in a position to export electricity to neighbouring India.
During the wet season, surplus energy can be transmitted over the Khimti-Dhalkebar transmission line to the Dhalkebar substation, and on to the Dhalkebar-Muzaffarpur cross-border transmission line for export to India.