Alkali-aggregate reactions make Mactaquac hydropower project's future unclear

Mactaquac Dam

Faulty concrete is forcing Canadian utility NB Power to evaluate the long-term viability of its 672-MW Mactaquac hydroelectric plant, HydroWorld.com has learned.

Completed in 1968, the Mactaquac Generating Station was intended to have a 100-year lifespan.

The concrete used in the Mactaquac dam's spillways and generating stations is suffering from alkali-aggregate reactions, however, which are causing the concrete to expand.

NB Power Gaetan Thomas said the utility has three options, which include the replacement of the complex's concrete structures and the installation of new generators and turbines; decommissioning the powerhouse but continuing operation of the dam; or removing the dam in its entirety.

Sources report a complete rehabilitation of the dam could cost as much as US$3 billion, and since the structure poses no immediate threat, NB Power said it will take its time to determine Mactaquac's fate.

The hydropower project currently supplies approximately 20% of the province's total power, and a highway that runs across the dam connects the banks of the St. John River.

NB Power said it anticipates studies and public consultations about the Mactaquac's future will likely begin next year.

HydroVision International 2014 Keynote Speakers

Presenting the HydroVision International 2014 Keynote Speakers

Check out a slideshow covering the keynote speakers at the HydroVision International 2014 conference and exhibition

Click Here >>

Hydro Industry Financials

Most Read Articles

Recent Comments

Buyers Guide Companies

MGS Geosense

Manufacturers and supplies geotechnical instrum...

Continuing Education

Professional Development Hours
To access a course listing associated to a specific topic listed below, click on the topic of choice from the list below.

06/01/2014
Volume 33, Issue 5
file
07/01/2014
Volume 22, Issue 4
file

Archived Articles

2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 2011 | 2012 | 2013
Hydro Review Past Issues