Largest Croatian hydroelectric facility offline after pipe bursts in 522-MW Zakucac powerhouse


Croatia's state-owned utility Hrvatska Elektroprivreda (HEP) reports the 522-MW Zakucac hydroelectric plant, which has the largest installed capacity in the county and generates a third of the nation’s energy, is offline after a burst-pipe caused “water leakage in the floor of the turbine in the engine room,” on July 8.

According to the company, the pipe burst after pressure regulation to it failed. The cost to repair the damage and a definite time table to bring the plant back online are not immediately available.

HEP said, "Despite the halt in the operation of Zakucac hydropower plant, HEP has secured enough electricity by increasing the generation in other capacities it operates and will also purchase the missing power on the market to ensure regular supply of all consumers.”

Located near the city of Omis, the facility was commissioned in 1961. It includes Prancevici Dam, a 35-m high concrete gravity dam that impounds the Cetina River. The impoundment creates two remote reservoirs, the Peruca and Busko Blato. According to a 2014 Global Energy Observatory report, the scheme has a total of four Francis turbines in its underground powerhouse; one at 144 MW; two at 135 MW; and one at 108 MW.

The Peruca Reservoir is used for seasonal flow regulation, while the Busko Blato performs full annual regulation, according to published reports.

Croatia generates 60% of its electricity needs from within the country and imports the rest.

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