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Voith to modernize generator at Vianden pumped storage plant in Luxembourg

CTBR Staff Writer Published 06 April 2018

German engineering company Voith has won the order to modernize a motor-generator at the Vianden pumped storage plant in Luxembourg.

The project includes design, calculation, construction, delivery and assembly of the one of the two machines at the facility.

The new motor-generator is expected to increase the capacity along with being able to respond faster to changes in the load requirements from the power grid when it goes back into operation.

The work on the machine is expected to be finished by 2021.

The power plant, owned by Societé Electrique de l’Our, and marketed and operated by RWE Generation, is located on the border between Germany and Luxembourg and feeds directly into the German electricity grid.

As part of the upgrade, the motor-generator, which was installed back in 1976, will be replaced with a new synchronous motor-generator supplied by Voith. The company claims that the new motor-generator will increase the generating capacity by around 7% to 217MW.

Voith Hydro in Germany project manager Stefan Linhart said: “This replaces the direct start-up of the machine via start-up current limiting reactors and a complex damper winding for the generator rotor. With the new starting frequency converter the machine can respond even faster to load fluctuations in the power grid.”

The company stated that for the modernization of the project, it has developed a space-saving solution that allows for new equipment to be installed within the existing system. In this process, it will mostly use existing distribution station architecture and infrastructure.

The firm said: "A new rotor design with rim ventilation also results in lower electrical and mechanical losses. This means that auxiliary units can be reduced. At the same the availability of the system, and thus its efficiency, increase."

The Vianden pumped storage plant has a total of 11 generating sets with a generator capacity of 1,495 MVA and turbine output of 1,290 MW. It started operations in 1964.

Image: Generator at the pumped storage power plant Vianden in Luxembourg. Photo: Courtesy of Voith GmbH.