Things To Do in VanderkloofVisit the Eskom Power Station
Where? Eskom Power Station, Vanderkloof Dam, Vanderkloof, Upper Karoo, Northern Cape.
When? By arrangement.
How? Call +27 (0)53 664-0202
How much? Falls into price group R1 to R100 per person. Confirm with the provider.
One of only two South African hydro power stations is powered with two generators at South Africa's second largest dam. This Eskom Hydroelectric Power Station is enclosed within the record 108m high wall of the Vanderkloof Dam. Tours travel inside this electrifying network shedding light on the inner workings of this hydro-power plant which can produce electricity at a flow rate of 400 m3/s up to a capacity of 240MW.
The tour includes an introductory slideshow on the history and building of this dam which is connected to a distribution network in the event of unplanned failures of other power stations and also assists in supplying peak power demand. Exploration of the plant will reveal two turbo generators encapsulated in an underground cavern on the left bank of the Orange River. Below the high voltage yard a 164m long tunnel links workers to this cavern measuring 91.2m in length, 48.6m in height and 24m in width.
The surface ancillary building is linked to the main hall by a passenger lift. Four gates fitted into the dam wall discharge water through the flood sluices on the left bank at a flow rate of 8500 m3/s. The Vanderkloof Dam catches water released from the Gariep Dam situated 130km upstream. This water is then either released downstream through the hydro electric generators each producing 120MW of electricity at a rate of 200 m3/s or transferred through the Orange / Riet Canal to the Riet River basin.
A power station visit is an electrifying experience educating on hydro power and ensuring that you will not be left in the dark.