Sayano–Shushenskaya hydro power plant

The Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam is located on the Yenisei River, near village Sayanogorsk (Khakassia, Russia). It is the largest power plant in Russia and the 13th-largest hydroelectric plant in the world.

hydro power plant Dam in Russia

The arch-gravity dam is 242 metres (794 ft) high. It has a crest length of 1,074 metres (3,497 ft), base width of 105.7 metres (347 ft) and maximum head of 220 metres (720 ft). It is by far the larger of only two gravity-arch dams in Russia.

Now the plant is operated by RusHydro.

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (40)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (39)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam workers

transformers on Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam

The station is the largest one contributing to peak consumption in the Unified Energy Systems of Russia. More than 70 % of generated electrical power goes to Rusal’s four smelters in Siberia.

In years of heavy rainfall, about 1,600–2,000 GWh are lost due to lack of high-voltage line transmission capacity, and some water bypasses the turbines. To avert this, a new aluminium plant was started on 15 December 2006.

transformers on Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (34)

hydro power plant Dam inside

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (31)

The 2009 Sayano–Shushenskaya hydroelectric power station accident occurred on 17 August 2009, when turbine 2 of the Sayano–Shushenskaya hydroelectric power station broke apart violently. The turbine hall and engine room were flooded, the ceiling of the turbine hall collapsed, 9 of 10 turbines were damaged or destroyed, and 75 people were killed.

Oleg Myakishev, a survivor of the accident, described it as follows:

…I was standing upstairs when I heard some sort of growing noise, then I saw the corrugated turbine cover rise and stand on end. Then I saw the rotor rising from underneath it. It was spinning. I could not believe my eyes. It rose about three meters. Rocks and pieces of metal went flying, we started to dodge them… At that point the corrugated cover was nearly at roof level, and the roof itself had been destroyed… I made a mental calculation: the water is rising, 380 cubic meters per second, so I took to my heels and ran for the № 10 turbine. I thought that I wouldn’t make it, I climbed higher, stopped, looked down, and saw everything getting destroyed, water coming in, people trying to swim… I thought: someone must urgently shut the gates to stop the water, manually… Manually, because there was no power, none of the protection systems had worked…

Construction

On 11 November 2014 the renovations and repairs were fully completed.

hydro power plant Dam inside

hydro power plant Dam inside

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (26)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (25)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam after the accident

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam after the accident

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (22)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam office

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam in office

Life in Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (18)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (17)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (16)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (15)

Yenisei

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam Yenisei

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (11)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (10)

Yenisei river

Travel in Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (8)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam Photography

Labyrinths of spillway.

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (6)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (5)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam Photography

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (3)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam (2)

Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam Night Photography

© Olga Saliy. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reproduced without prior written permission of author.

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