Voith Hydro has been awarded the contract to rehabilitate and upgrade the turbines in the 10-unit powerhouse at Grant County (Washington) Public Utility District's (PUD) Priest Rapids Dam on the Columbia River. Installation of the upgraded vertical Kaplan turbines, with a majority of the rehab work being performed at Voith's York, Pennsylvania facility, will span 10 years starting in 2016, with one unit upgraded per year. Voith performed extensive model testing over the past several years, culminating in a successful customer witness test in Lausanne, Switzerland in June 2013. Each turbine is rated at approximately 100 MW.
"Voith is excited to work with Grant County PUD on turbine upgrades at the Priest Rapids Dam over the next decade," said Kevin Frank, President and CEO of Voith Hydro York, USA. "With these improvements, Priest Rapids will continue to serve Grant County PUD customers for many decades to come and continue the Pacific Northwest's leadership in generating the abundant, clean, and low-cost hydropower that provides energy to hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses in the region."
Cavitation free performance and stringent fish passage criteria were critical components for the final awarded design of the turbine. With the award of the Priest Rapids contract, Voith is once again modernizing components of a hydropower plant on the Columbia River; the company recently completed the final turbine upgrade at the 10-unit Wanapum Dam, which is immediately upstream from Priest Rapids.