The first two turbines of the Laúca hydroelectric dam on the Kwanza River in Angola are due to start operating in July 2017. The Brazilian company, Odebrecht, is responsible for the project and has announced that the turbines will have the capacity to produce 340 megawatts (MW) each.
Kleriston Acácio, communication and brand representative of Odebrecht, told Angolan newspaper Expansão that power production tests are scheduled to begin in 24 months and the first power turbine will be put into operation in 2016.
In the second half of 2017, the first 500 MW of energy will increase to 2 070 MW when the dam is completed, which represents twice the power currently produced by the Cambambe and Capanda dams.
The Laúca dam is the third under construction in the Kwanza River basin after the Cambambe and Capanda dams, and will be 132 metres high with a reservoir of 188 square kilometres that is expected to fill over a period of four months.
The Laúca dam is the largest civil and mechanical engineering project in Angola, located 47 kilometres downstream of the Capanda hydroelectric dam (AHC) and 400 kilometres from Luanda. Work on the dam commenced in 2012 and will cost USD 4.3 billion derived from a loan and a credit line from Brazil.
Once fully operational, the power produced at the dam will supply over 700 000 Angolans with electricity and benefit 5 000 people with direct jobs.
Acácio of Odebrecht also said the project will use 30 000 tons of steel, which is equivalent to building four Eiffel towers. The 22 000 tons of cement that will be used is the equivalent of 465 eight-storey buildings.