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07.27.2005

Befesa wins the contract to modernize Emasesa’s Hydro-electric Power Station at Minilla

Emasesa, the Seville Municipal Water Supply and Sanitation Company, has awarded Befesa Construcción y Tecnología Ambiental the contract to improve and modernize the automation, remote control and remote monitoring systems in the La Minilla Hydroelectric Power Station on the left bank of the Rivera river in Huelva, downstream from the La Minilla Dam weir in the province of Seville.

The La Minilla plant was built by Abengoa and became operational in 1985. At that time it was equipped with the very best systems and installations available . Today, advances in communications and programmable monitoring systems have made the plant’s original systems obsolete, and many replacement parts for them are no longer manufactured.

Some of the plant’s systems are automated and activated by remote control, enabling the load to be increased or decreased once the power station is working. The parallel Hollow Jet valves can also be opened and closed remotely from the dam and even from Emasesa’s main offices in Seville. However, Emasesa personnel still have to be present in order to begin or switch off operations from the local control panel. But the access road to the plant may occasionally be flooded by the outflow from the dam’s overflow channels, and in such circumstances it is impossible for personnel to reach the station.

These works will guarantee and improve the power station’s remote control and remote monitoring systems, allowing operations to be started and stopped from the dam or from the Remote Control and Monitoring Centre in Seville. It will no longer be necessary for staff to travel to the plant, where all automatic, regulatory and operational systems will be updated and optimized.

Power Station features:

The power station has a horizontal-axis alternator turbine unit producing 2500 kVA at 600 r.p.m. with a vertical drop of 49 m, and therefore falls into the medium pressure category. Its flow rate is 5 m3 /s. The water comes in from the intake tower at the La Minilla reservoir, flowing through 1.5 metre diameter. After passing through the turbine, it is pumped into the La Minilla Canal, which takes it 60 kilometres to the El Carambolo Potable Water Treatment Plant in Seville’s Aljarafe region. There it is purified to supply the City of Seville.