Kindaruma upgrade enhances power supply

July 24, 2013
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KenGen received the newly upgraded Kindaruma Unit I from Andritz Hydro and Farab Company/FILE
KenGen received the newly upgraded Kindaruma Unit I from Andritz Hydro and Farab Company/FILE
NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 24 – The national power grid is expected to get a boost after the Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) announced the completion of upgrading of the last phase of Kindaruma Unit I power plant.

KenGen received the newly upgraded Kindaruma Unit I from Andritz Hydro and Farab Company.

The upgraded unit is now generating 24 Megawatts (MW) of power up from 20MW previously.

The upgrade of Unit 1 is part of a major refurbishment of the Kindaruma plant that will see the plant’s total capacity raised by 80 percent from 40MW to 72MW.

‘We are very happy to see more power output realized from our older power plants. What is important to note is that this additional capacity is from hydro generation which is our cheapest mode of generation and hence making power even more affordable to power consumers in the country,” KenGen acting Managing Director Eng Simon Ngure said during the issuing of a take-over certificate ceremony on Wednesday.

The upgrade of Kindaruma began with installation of a 3rd unit which was commissioned in June 2012.

After the third unit was installed, Unit II was rehabilitated and upgraded from 20MW to 24MW and handed over to KenGen on January 15, 2013.

The upgrade of Unit I was the last phase of the project that has almost doubled the amount of power generated by the Kindaruma Power Plant.

The entire Kindaruma rehabilitation’s cost is Sh6.3 billion which has been financed by KfW, a German Development Bank and KenGen.

The Kindaruma plant was commissioned in 1968 with two units generating a total of 40MW. The plant’s civil works however had provisions for a third unit, but this was not installed due to the low power demands back then.

Among major projects to meet Kenya’s energy demand is the ongoing over Sh80 billion Olkaria 280MW geothermal projects in Olkaria which is half way complete with the first units scheduled to start generating early next year.

The project will raise KenGen’s total output by 25 percent and help cushion the country from the expensive thermal generation.

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