CELEC carries out sediment studies at 65-MW Manduriacu hydroelectric reservoir

Corporación Eléctrica del Ecuador (CELEC EP) carried out a second study earlier this month on the location of sediment in the reservoir of the 65-MW Manduriacu hydroelectric plant reservoir to determine the volume of evacuated sediment.

The Manduriacu hydroelectric project is located in the parishes of Pacto (Quito canton – Pichincha province) and Garcà­a Moreno del (Cotacachi canton – Imbabura province). It was built by Compaà±à­a Constructora Norberto Odebrecht SA and started operations in March 2015.

The direct beneficiary of this project is the Ecuadorian State and the entire population of the country. CELEC EP says 397.5 GWh/year will be contributed , which will reduce vulnerability to the suspension of electric power service.

To improve operation of the Manduriacu plant, CELEC EP performs sediment evacuation maneuvers twice a year. In this case, sediment evacuation maneuvers took place at the beginning of March 2021. Before and after each maneuver, the company carries out sediment studies.

A bathymetry study was carried out in an area of 80 hectares using portable, remote unmanned equipment of reduced dimensions. The main functionality of this study was to obtain information from the bottom of the reservoir, in its entire extension.

The equipment CELEC EP technicians used has an echo sounder that emits signals up to the depth of the reservoir. It runs through the entire area delineating transverse lines every 5, 10 and 20 meters. The collected data is then processed to obtain results about accumulated and evacuated sedimentation.

In this exercise, aerial photographs (orthophotos) were also taken to monitor the state of the entire reservoir and its slopes, after the sediment removal from the Manduriacu reservoir was completed.

CELEC EP said using this bathymetry equipment and the experience of the corporation’s technicians saves the company about $160,000 per year.

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