Operations at the power station located in Mpumalanga, resumed on Thursday after a successful project to relocate ash from an unsafe dam at the station.

Following a four-month shutdown, Unit 8 of the station was synchronised onto the grid on Thursday, with Unit 5 expected to return to service on Friday afternoon.

“Five other units will start returning to service from 1 September until 19 September 2020. Unit 3 will remain on a major outage for the next three months. This will add a total 1 400MW to the grid,” said Eskom.

Operations at the station were suspended on 24 April 2020 following the outcome of a review by a professional body, which was contracted by Eskom to conduct a risk assessment on the structural integrity of the ash dam.

The contractor concluded that the current dam had reached its maximum height and therefore it posed a safety risk to all personnel on site, including neighbouring communities and could be a cause for environmental contravention if not attended to.

Eskom has moved about 795 000 cubic metres of ash from the dam, inclusive of 300 000 cubic metres that is being moved by road to an opencast mine for beneficiation.

To create more space, the second phase of the project will be to excavate 800 000 cubic metres of ash from the north side of the dam to a mine for beneficiation. This project should be completed by the end of November 2020.

 

Source: SA News

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