Hydro Bulb Turbine

Alstom has won a contract worth €80m to supply additional equipment for the Santo Antonio hydro plant located on the Madeira River in Rondonia State, Brazil.

Under the contract, Alstom will supply two more Bulb turbines, four generators, two speed governors, two excitation systems and six bus bars, while its joint venture with Bardella, IMMA will be responsible for providing 100% of the hydro-mechanical and lifting equipment.

To be commissioned by December 2016, the new equipment being manufactured at Alstom’s Taubate unit will enhance the capacity of the project by 417MW to achieve 3,568MW.

The new bulb units provide the most efficient solution when faced with heads of up to 30m and are suitable for low head and run-of-river hydropower schemes and have almost replaced Kaplan turbines for new low head power plants, Alstom claims.

Alstom has been working on its first contract valued at €500m related to the project that was awarded in 2008 and has concluded 40% of the first scope.

"The project will generate enough electricity to power around 44 million people."

The scope of the first contract included the supply of electro-mechanical and hydro-mechanical equipment, including 19 bulb turbines and 22 generators as well as 50% of the project’s hydro-mechanical and lifting equipment.

The project, which is being developed by Santo Antonio Energia, will generate enough electricity to power around 44 million people.

The existing run-of-river type plant has 44 bulb turbines of 71.6MW each and is claimed to be the world’s second largest bulb-type turbine hydroelectric plant.

The developers started construction on the project in the fourth quarter of 2008 and grid-connected the first two turbines in March 2012, generating the first power.

Image: Hydro Bulb turbine Alstom. Photo: courtesy of Alstom.