The contract was signed with Construtora Norberto Odebrecht, the EPC (engineering, procurement, construction) consortium leader of the the Santo Antonio plant. The plant is scheduled to start commercial operation by mid 2012.
The Santo Antonio plant will be built on the Madeira river in the country’s northwest State of Rondônia, with an installed capacity of 3,150 MW. It will comprise 44 bulb type generating units, of which Alstom Hydro will provide 19 bulb turbines and 22 generators as well as 50% of the project’s hydro-mechanical and lifting equipment.
Bulb units* are especially suitable for low head and run-of-river hydropower schemes such as Santo Antonio. These units are highly efficient as they are fully submerged in the water and thus able to handle significant variations in water discharge, as is the case for the Amazon region.
Alstom Hydro will manufacture the turbines and generators at its facility in Taubaté**, Brazil, one of the company’s largest hydro industrial hubs world-wide. The hydro-mechanical and lifting equipment will be supplied from a new factory currently being built in Porto Velho, Rondônia, by Indústria Metalúrgica e Mecânica da Amazônia (IMMA), a joint-venture by Alstom Hydro and Bardella, a Brazilian capital goods company. The plant, mainly dedicated to the projects in the Amazon region, is expected to be operational at the end of 2009 and will employ approximately 300 people.
“We are honored to participate in the Santo Antonio project, one of Brazil’s most important infrastructure works,” said Philippe Joubert, President of Alstom Power Systems. He added: “Hydropower is the world’s most important source of renewable energy, representing over 16% of global electricity production today. With growing need for energy all over the world and increased demand in developing regions like Latin America, hydro can play an important role in energy production in particular as an independent energy source which is locally available. ”
Alstom has a presence of over 50 years in Brazil and Alstom Hydro leads the hydroelectric generation sector with 35% of the market. Alstom Hydro, a joint venture between Alstom and Bouygues, is the world leader in the supply of hydropower integrated power plant equipment and services with over 400 GW of turbines and generators installed worldwide, representing more than 25% of global hydropower installed capacity. Alstom Hydro offers the broadest range of products and solutions that cover all hydropower schemes, from large to small, from run-of-river to pumped-storage, for new installations, refurbishment, upgrading and services. The joint venture has 5500 employees in 19 countries.