25 March, 2022
The Snowy Hydro Murray 1 transformer refurbishment project has reached the halfway point. The project, which started in September 2020, involves the refurbishment and HV bushing replacement on eight 68MVA 330/15kV single-phase units at the Murray Power 1 power station. The transformer overhaul program for each transformer on-site takes six weeks for overhaul and 12-15 days for each changeover.
The conventional gravity-fed hydroelectric power station is located 6.5 km from Khancoban township in NSW, along the Alpine Way. The site including the overhead line and connections was constructed in the period 1963 to 1967.
Peter Hennessy, Regional Manager NSW & QLD, said the ambitious project has been unlike a typical installation project.
“WTC manufactured a purpose-built dry out tank in the Glen Waverley factory specifically for the project,” Peter said. “The tank is utilised after the team has de-tanked the core and coils – which are then both put inside the dry out tank. The team then complete welding works and modification of the old transformer tank and lid, before re-tanking the unit into the original body.”
There have been a number of challenges to overcome throughout the project including road closures due to rock falls on the Alpine way and the weather extremes of working in the Snowy Mountains. Not to mention the COVID-19 pandemic, which has heavily impacted the scheduling of the project with the border closure between New South Wales and Victoria in 2020.
Khancoban is right near the NSW/Victorian border on the NSW side. Coordinating entry into NSW for members of the team from Victoria was a complex logistical exercise that involved ongoing negotiations with state authorities and health services.
There have been also some works being done on the generators within the power station workshop which has meant the WTC team has been completing the works outside the power station. To combat this issue the team has erected a waterproof scaffold structure that covers the transformer and dry out tank, which resembles a small house.
“Our team has also been working closely with a number of local businesses and using their expertise to assist with the project,” Peter said.
Since the beginning of the project, the WTC management team has been working closely with the customer to ensure the project meets the operational and delivery requirements. The project is expected to be completed in 2023.