CTG Brasil concludes modernization of Capivara HPP

Largest HPP on the Paranapanema river gains 24 megawatts of power after modernization. Project received investment of R$ 150 million

CTG Brasil has just completed the process of modernization and repowering of the Capivara HPP, the largest hydropower plant on the Paranapanema River. With a gain of 24 megawatts (MW) of power, Capivara’s installed capacity is expected to reach 643 MW, enough power to power a city of about 1.2 million. CTG Brasil is still awaiting ratification of the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel) for the last 8 MW of repowering.

The project, which began in 2016, involved the modernization of the four generating units and the upgrading of units 1, 2 and 4. In addition to more energy, modernization brings greater efficiency and reliability to the plant and other advantages, such as the installation of equipment with state-of-the-art technology in the various monitoring and control systems of the generating units.

Another gain is that the new turbines installed have nominal efficiency of 92%, compared to 85% of the old, which allowed the increase of 15.6 MW of available energy for sale, as well as the production of more energy with less water passing through the turbines .

The project, which was budgeted at R$ 150 million, was completed 30 days in advance of the initial planning, and was attended by about 130 professionals from CTG Brasil and Voith, a partner company in the modernization project.

According to Alexander Dáquila, Operation and Maintenance manager at the Capivara HPP, “modernization represents a milestone for the Brazilian electricity system, since the 42 year old plant is one of the most important in the region, and advanced technology”.

Renato Castilho, manager of Maintenance Engineering at CTG Brasil, recalls that “the Capivara Plant was a pioneer in the repowering project in Brazil. It was also one of the pioneers in the use of the regulatory process that allows the increase of the available energy for the sale with greater yield of the turbines”.

In addition to the Capivara HPP at Paranapanema, CTG Brasil is modernizing the Jupiá and Ilha Solteira HPP’s on the Paraná River, a R$ 3 billion project that will take up to ten years to complete. The work involves the modernization of 34 generating units and the implementation of an integrated operation center, using what is most current in the technology of operation of hydroelectric plants.

Inaugurated in March 1977, the Capivara HPP has been operated since 2016 by CTG Brasil, which holds the concession until 2029. Important for leisure and economy in the region, the reservoir bathes nine cities in São Paulo and 12 in Paraná.