South Africa’s Ingula hydroelectric plant becomes fully operational

South Africa’s Ingula hydroelectric plant becomes fully operational

Eskom has announced that Unit 3 of its Ingula Pumped Storage Scheme in South Africa has been brought into commercial operation, meaning all four units of the plant are up and running.

The plant is a hydroelectric, pump-storage power station located on the cross-border of the Free State and KwaZulu-Natal.

The final unit to come into operation will add 333MW of electricity to the national grid, with the plant’s total energy output reaching 1,332MW.

Matshela Koko, Eskom’s interim group chief executive said: “I am thrilled that we are on track to deliver all new build projects online timeously.

“This achievement would not have been possible without the hard-working team at Ingula and strong executive leadership in Eskom.”

Ingula is Africa’s newest and largest pumped storage facility, and the 14th largest in the world.

All four units are located 350 metres underground, where a 500 tonne rotating turbine generates energy via water that is released from Ingula’s Bedford Dam.

Construction began on the project in 2005, with the first unit becoming commercially operational in June 2016.