VA Tech Hydro to refurbish Mexico's 960-MW Infiernillo

National utility Comision Federal de Electricidad has awarded a 14 million euro (US$18.5 million) contract to Andritz VA Tech Hydro to modernize and rehabilitate the 960-MW Infiernillo hydroelectric project.

VA Tech Hydro affiliate VA Tech Escher Wyss S.A. de C.V of Mexico is to modernize four Francis turbines at Mexico's third largest hydro plant, on the Balsas River.

The 1964-vintage turbine runners are to be replaced, while turbine and generator guide bearings are modernized and equipped with new oil cooling systems and instrumentation. The work is to require 3.5 years, with the last of the four units to be commissioned in March 2010.

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