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Top Ten Largest Hydroelectric Power Plants of the World: Part-4

written by: Haresh Khemani • edited by: Lamar Stonecypher • updated: 10/22/2009

This is the series of articles on ten largest hydroelectric power plants of the world. In this article following hydroelectric power plants have been described:Churchill Falls hydroelectric power plant and Bratsk hydroelectric power plant

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    9) Churchill Falls hydroelectric power plant

    Churchill Falls is the second largest hydroelectric power plant of Canada located on Churchill River in Newfoundland and Labrador. The Churchill Falls are 75 meters high located on Churchill River. The River and the falls have been named after Prime Minister of Britain, Sir Winston Churchill to honor him. Since the year 1970, the water from Churchill Falls is being diverted to the Churchill hydroelectric power plants and waterfalls are visible only during the years of exceptionally heavy rainfall. After Robert-Bourassa, Churchill hydroelectric power plants are the second largest underground hydroelectric power plant of the world.

    The total power production capacity of Churchill Falls Hydroelectric power plant is 5428MW. There are total 11 power generation units each with the capacity of 494MW and having vertical type of Francis turbines. The total head of water is 312 meters.

    The total height of Churchill Falls hydroelectric power plant is 47 meters from bottom to top, which is equivalent to 15 storey building. The powerhouse is 296 meters long and 25 meters wide. The total rock obtained from excavation of underground caverns was used for the construction of the city roads and also as a dike material. The plant was commissioned in the year 1971 and, before this the work was carried out non-stop for five years and almost 6300 workers were involved.

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    Image Source: Wikipedia

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    10) Bratsk hydroelectric power plant

    Bratsk hydroelectric power plant is located near Bratsk in Russia and it developed on Angara River. The plant was commissioned in the year 1967 and it annually produces 22.6TWh of power. The total power generation capacity of Bratsk hydroelectric power plant is 4500MW. There are 18 power generation units each with the capacity of 250MW and is equipped with Francis turbine.

    The dam of Bratsk hydroelectric plant comprises of 924 meter long wall with the height of 124.5 meters. Then there are costal concrete wall which are 506 meters long. There is railway track and automobile road on the upper sides of the wall.

    The total head of water in the dam is 106meters. There is a long penstock of 5140 meters from reservoir of the dam to power generation units.

    The Bratsk hydroelectric power plant provides power to hundreds of factories. The major power is consumed by Bratsk Aluminum Plant amounting to 75% of the total power produced by the Bratsk hydroelectric power plant.


    Image Source: Wikipdeia

    The hydroelectric power plants are wonder in itself due to sophisticated technology used in them and their gigantic size. Apart from the above mentioned top ten largest hydroelectric power plants of the world, there are many other mammoth hydroelectric power plants located in many parts of the world. Each has its own specialty and uniqueness. No matter to which hydroelectric power plant you go for visit, you are sure to be amazed by its size and magnanimity. But one thing you should also be aware of is the large scale disturbance carried out in the natural plant, animal and water ecosystem by these power plants, and not to forget the wide scale human displacement.