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Wivenhoe Power Station overhaul finishes early

The $13.5 million Wivenhoe Power Station overhaul has finished four days ahead of schedule.

The 85-day major overhaul at CS Energy’s pumped storage hydroelectric station, near Fernvale in south east Queensland, was carried out on Unit 1 at the power station and brought more than 90 contractors to site, used more than 100 tonnes of scaffolding, 50 tonnes of garnet for sandblasting and 2,300 litres of paint.

More than 47,000 hours were worked on the overhaul and the unit was available to generate electricity from October 20, four days ahead of the originally scheduled completion date of October 24.

The early completion was largely the result of the unit being in better condition than expected since its last major overhaul.

The overhaul was completed safely, with no lost time injuries or medical treatment injuries, according to a statement from the company.

Key works included the replacement of the draft tube bearing, internal pump painting, replacement of the guard gate rollers at Splityard Creek Dam and replacement of the generator transformer high voltage protection system.

CS Energy Chief Executive Officer Martin Moore said the overhaul would ensure the power station operated safely, reliably and efficiently into the future.

“Wivenhoe Power Station is a peaking power station that has provided quick start capacity to the national electricity grid since 1984,” he said.

“The power station works like a giant rechargeable battery by cycling water between an upper and lower reservoir.

“Wivenhoe’s upper reservoir, Splityard Creek Dam, has a capacity of 23,300 megalitres, which is enough to run the power station for up to 10 hours at full load.”

Wivenhoe Power Station is the only pumped storage hydroelectric plant in Queensland and consists of two 250 megawatt units that are the largest hydro machines in Australia, which each have almost 1,500 tonnes spinning when in operation. The power station has a design life of 100 years.

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