The technology group Voith has signed a comprehensive service and operations consultancy contract for the Ethiopian hydropower plant Gilgel Gibe II during the “G20 Investment Summit” on November 19 in Berlin, Germany.
The agreement was signed by the Ethiopian Minister of Water, Irrigation and Electricity Dr. Seleshi Bekele and Mark Claessen, Managing Director Voith Hydro East Africa in the attendance of Peter Altmaier, the German Federal Minister for Economics and Energy.
The investor summit took place within the “G20-Initiative Compact with Africa“. Twelve Heads of State of the African Compact partner countries as well as South Africa, acting as G20 partner of the intitiative, were attending the summit.
Focus on plant availability and resource optimization
Central aspect of the two-year service and operations consultancy contract is the optimization of the energy production of the hydropower plant Gilgel Gibe II with an current output of 420 megawatts. Voith’s scope of supply comprises the modernization of the maintenance systems, the implementa-tion of digital solutions and the knowledge transfer through special training programs. All local activities are exclusivly provided by Ethiopian Voith experts.
Together with the plant operator Ethiopian Electric Power we want to utilize the whole potential of the hydropower plant Gilgel Gibel II. We succeed in this by reduzing unplanned downtimes and failures to a mini-mum“, says Mark Claessen, Managing Director Voith Hydro East Africa. “A stable and sustainable energy supply is the foundation for social and economical development in Ethiopia and many other African countries.“
Another component for a reliable energy supply in Africa
The hydropower plant Gilgel Gibel II is located about 300 km south-east of the Ethiopian capital Addis Abeba. Voith supplied four Pelton turbines and generators as well as the entire mechanical and electrical equipment and also trained the plant operator’s staff.
Before Gilgel Gibe II went into operation, only 15 per cent of Ethiopia’s villages were connected to the power grid. Now, half of the rural settlements are supplied with power. In total, Ethiopian hydropower plants with Voith technology supply up to 900,000 households in the country with clean and sustainable electricity.
With a hydropower potential of 45,000 megawatts, Ethiopia has one of the largest hydropower resources on the African continent. Since 2011, the country supports the development of renewable energy and wants to be-come an energy hub for East Africa in the medium term.
About the Voith Group
The Voith Group is a global technology company. With its broad portfolio of systems, products, services and digital applications, Voith sets standards in the markets of energy, oil & gas, paper, raw materials and transport & automotive. Founded in 1867, the company today has more than 19,000 employees, sales of € 4.2 billion and locations in over 60 countries worldwide and is thus one of the larger family-owned companies in Europe.
The Group Division Voith Hydro is part of the Voith Group and a leading full-line supplier as well as trusted partner for equipping hydropower plants. Voith develops customized, long-term solutions and services for large and small hydro plants all over the world.
Its portfolio of products and services covers the entire life cycle and all major components for large and small hydro plants, from generators, turbines, pumps and automation systems, right through to spare parts, maintenance and training services, and digital solutions for intelligent hydropower.