Technicians at work in substation
Rwanda Energy Group (REG) has started upgrading power substations in various parts of the country to ensure efficiency of electricity supply and reduce losses throughout the transmission lines.
This Saturday 10th June, during a tour with the press at one of these substations at Mukungwa hydropower plant currently being upgraded, the Chief Executive of REG, Ron Weiss, said that some substations supplying various parts of the country needed upgrade as they are old while others don’t fit the demand anymore.
The existing transformer at the station had a capacity of 5 megavolt amps (MVA), supplying Musanze, Nyabihu and Rubavu District. REG authorities said that it was overloaded and thus, causing unstable electricity supply the area.
The CEO said that the upgraded transformer will have a capacity of 15MV and is expected to be completed in July.
“The transformer is three times the size of the old one and we hope the supply will be enough and no more outages will be there,” said Eng. Weiss.
The Chief Executive of REG, Ron Weiss addressing the Journalists at Mukungwa hydropower plant in Musanze District on Saturday June 10, 2017
According to the EDCL Managing Director, Emmanuel Kamanzi, there was an overstretched MV line supplying Musanze, Nyabihu and Rubavu areas, causing many trips and loss of generated electricity connected to the transmission lines in the area. Kamanzi also said Gifurwe substation in Rulindo is being upgraded while two more others in Nyabihu and Rubavu will be constructed next year.
Apart from power instability, another challenge being addressed is the reduction of power losses due to the inefficiency of the transmission lines. Kamanzi said that these upgrades will help to ensure that these losses are minimized. Currently, the losses rate is reduced at a rate of one per cent every year, but the aim is higher in the future.
“It will demand a lot of investment but we will do whatever we can,” said Weiss.
In his move to get familiar with the current existing country’s energy/electricity infrastructure, the Chief Executive of REG, in the office since May 2017, has visited various infrastructures in Northern Province namely Ntaruka Hydropower Plant (HPP) producing 11.25MW as well as Camp Belge and Rulindo power substations while in the West he visited Gishoma peat to power plant, currently generating 15MW, as well as Ntendezi, Mururu I, Mururu II and Mashyuza Power Substations.