​Giant Russian hydroelectric plant relaunched at full capacity after 2009 catastrophe

​Giant Russian hydroelectric plant relaunched at full capacity after 2009 catastrophe
Russia’s Sayano-Shushenskaya hydroelectric power plant, one of the world’s most powerful, has resumed operations at planned capacity after completion of repairs and will provide stable energy supplies across Siberia for at least the next 40 years.

The last of the 10 generators at the Sayano-Shushenskaya hydroelectric power plant destroyed five years ago, was brought online Wednesday. Russian President Vladimir Putin set the generator going via videoconference from Vladivostok. The plant on the Yenisei River in Russia’s Khakassia Region is the most powerful in Russia.

On August 17, 2009, torrents of water tore off the roof of the power generating hall flooding the 10 generators at the station. The tragedy killed 75 people, and was the worst in the history of Russian hydroelectricity.

“I am sure that the effort will not only improve energy supply of the Siberian region, but will also contribute in general to stabilizing the work of the country’s whole energy system,” said Putin.

He stressed that the work to restore and modernize the plant has brought it to a new level. The service life of power units is now 40 years and the maximum efficiency reaches 96.6 percent.

He noted that the start-up of Unit 2, which was most severely damaged in the disaster, is symbolic as it “completes the full restoration of the plant, which again gets the status of flagship of national energy.”

The plant went through a process of full modernization, including replacement of 10 generator circuit-breakers and 16 power transformers. The central control board is now equipped with a modern signal panel and video wall – the first its kind at a Russian HPP.