With the filling of the reservoir, the tests on the plant began in May.
In March, after the summer season with the greatest water demand for irrigation ended and after confirming that this resource was available for use at Punta Negra, the filling of the reservoir was restarted. Since the level of 920 masl had been reached in April, the tests on all the Hydroelectric Power Plant’s systems started on the first days of May.
The tests began with the filling of the forced piping and of the headrace tunnel, and continued with the emptying and draining systems, the bypass system for irrigation and the turbines’ cooling system. At the same time, the powering of the Machine Plant was completed from the Transforming Yard, which was already operational. This enabled the first-turn test on turbine 1 to begin on May 24.
In order to put Punta Negra’s electromechanical facilities into operation, the first step consisted on drawing up a detailed program, on which a consensus was reached with EPSE (the client) and the main equipment suppliers. Meanwhile, the specific procedures – with their corresponding protocols –to put each equipment and installation into operation were prepared.
It is estimated that the entire testing process will be carried out within a timespan of four months and, once completed, civil engineering for the work completion will be carried out.