ABB wins US$120 million hydropower contract

Swiss engineering company ABB Ltd. won a US$120 million contract from Kraftwerke Linth-Limmern AG for work on a pumped-storage project in eastern Switzerland.

The hydroelectric powerhouse will be built in an underground cavern and will pump water from the lower Limmernsee Reservoir in Linthal Valley to the upper Muttsee Reservoir. During periods of peak demand, water will be released from the upper reservoir to generate higher-priced electricity.

The first of four generating units should begin generating power by 2015, the company said.

Under the contract, ABB will provide transformers, switchgears, and automation systems for the project. In addition, ABB will supply a 380-kilovolt gas-insulated switchgear substation.

“ABB has the range of technologies as well as the domain expertise and proven track record to execute such projects,” said Peter Leupp, head of ABB’s Power Systems division.

He said pumped-storage projects “offer the most effective opportunity for large-scale energy storage, in terms of both cost and environmental impact.”

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