Hydroelectric Plants in Argentina

Agua del Toro
Location: Mendoza
Operator: HINISA-HIDISA
Configuration: 4 X 65 MW Francis
Operation: 1982
T/G supplier: CKD, Skoda
EPC: Studio Ing C Marcelo, Panedile Argentina
Quick facts: In early 1994, EDF and Banco de Galicia paid $74mn for a 59% stake in the 400-MW Rio Diamante system known as Hirdroeléctrica Diamante (HIDISA) and shortly thereafter secured 51% of Hidroeléctrica de los Nihuiles (HINISA) for $32.8mni. In Oct 1994, HIDISA was granted a 30yr concession for three hydro plants, Agua del Toro, Los Reyunos and El Tigre. From 1990 to 2007, annual average generation from the three plants was 616 GWh. HIDISA is now controlled by Pampa Energia (Grupo Dolphin).

Photograph by Fran y Kelo Matias (Panoramio)
Posted 11 Jan 2008

Alicura
Location: Neuquen
Operator: AES Andes
Configuration: 4 X 255 MW Francis
Operation: 1987
T/G supplier: AC, Toshiba
EPC: Electrowatt

Photograph courtesy of ORSEP
Posted 20 Jan 2005

Arroyito
Location: Neuquen
Operator: Hidroelectria del Chocon SA
Configuration: 3 X 40 MW Pelton
Operation: 1972
T/G supplier: Sulzer Escher Wyss, IMPSA, BBC

Photograph courtesy of ORSEP
Posted 20 Jan 2005

Bamba
Location: Cordoba
Operator: Empresa Provincial de Energia de Cordoba
Configuration: 3 X 760 kW Francis
Operation: 1901 (ret 1964)
T/G supplier: Escher Wyss, BTH
EPC: Agua y Energia, Sollazo Hermanos, Techint
Quick facts: This plant on the Río Suquía the was one of the first of its size in South America and construction got underway on 29 Nov 1897 by Cía Luz y Fuerza de Córdoba. Electricity production started in 1901. The three penstocks send water 30.8m down to the power station.

Photograph by Facundo Di Pascuale and courtesy of EPEC
Posted 7 Feb 2009

Cabra Corral
Location: Salta
Operator: AES Andes
Configuration: 3 X 34 MW Francis
Operation: 1978
T/G supplier: Litostroj, Koncar

Photograph courtesy of ORSEP
Posted 20 Jan 2005

Cacheuta Nueva
Location: Mendoza
Operator: HidroCuyo SA
Configuration: 4 X 30 MW Francis
Operation: 2002
T/G supplier: Impsa
EPC: Coyne et Bellier, Jose Cartellone

Photograph courtesy of AGEERA
Posted 11 Jan 2009

Cassaffousth
Location: Cordoba
Operator: Empresa Provincial de Energia de Cordoba
Configuration: 3 X 5.9 MW
Operation: 1955
T/G supplier: ??
Quick facts: Carlos Adolfo Cassaffousth was a leading civil engineer in Argentina in the late 19th Century. His crowning achievement was the San Roque Dam, said to be the world's largest at completion.

Photograph courtesy of AGEERA
Posted 11 Jan 2009

Cerros Colorados
Location: Neuquen
Operator: Duke Energy Argentina
Configuration: 2 X 243 MW Francis
Operation: 1978
T/G supplier: Boving, Siemens
EPC: Gibb, Impregilo, Sollazo
Quick facts: This complex of dams and other water works was acquired by Duke in 1993. Also known as Planicie Banderita.

Photograph courtesy of Duke Energy Argentina
Posted 4 Jul 2005

El Chocon
Location: Neuquen
Operator: Hidroelectric El Chocon SA
Configuration: 6 X 200 MW Francis
Operation: 1972-1977
T/G supplier: Boving, Siemens
EPC: Italconsult, Sofrelec, Harza, Gibb, Sollazo Hermanos
Quick facts: El Chocón Dam is the fourth of five dams on the Rio Limay in northwestern Patagonia and the largest hydroelectric power station in the region. It was built by the state-owned company Hidronor (Hidroeléctrica Norpatagónica) and privatized in 1993. The dam is built of stone, tuffa, sand and earth. It is 86m high, 2,500m long, and 380m wide at the base.

Photograph courtesy of ORSEP
Posted 20 Jan 2005

El Tunal
Location: Neuquen
Operator: AES Andes
Configuration: 2 X 5.2 MW Francis
Operation: 1999
T/G supplier: Voith, Alstom

Photograph courtesy of AGEERA
Re-posted 10 Jan 2009

La Calera
Location: Cordoba
Operator: Empresa Provincial de Energia de Cordoba
Configuration: 4 X 1.25 MW Francis
Operation: 1911
T/G supplier: Escher Wyss, Dick Kerr
Quick facts: Built by Cía Luz y Fuerza de Córdoba.

Photograph courtesy of Museo Usina Molet
Posted 7 Feb 2009

La Viña
Location: Cordoba
Operator: Empresa Provincial de Energia de Cordoba
Configuration: 2 X 8 MW Francis
Operation: 1954
T/G supplier: Alsthom-Jeumont
EPC: James Fitz-Simon
Quick facts: At 106m, this dam on the Rio Los Sauces is Argentina's tallest. The crest is 317m long and 4m across. The project was first mooted in 1938 and dam construction was completed in Jun 1944. Power plant construction began in 1952 and the plant was connected to the grid on 28 Feb 1959. The structure is formally named Engineer Antonio Medina Allende Dam.

Photograph courtesy of AGEERA
Posted 7 Feb 2009

Los Caracoles
Location: San Juan
Operator: Energia Provincial Sociedad del Estado SA (EPSE)
Configuration: 2 X 63 MW Francis
Operation: 2009
T/G supplier: Power Machines Group
EPC: Electrowatt, Panedile, Techint
Quick facts: This multipurpose project is on the Rio San Juan at the borders of Ullum and Zonda departments. The dam was completed in Oct 2008 and the power station commissioned in Apr 2009. The photo is dated Dec 2006. The dam is 136m tall and 620m long. Los Caracoles was originally developed in 1998 as an IPP but later reverted to provincial control.

Photograph by ni.nocion (Panoramio)
Posted 3 Feb 2010

Los Molinos
Location: Cordoba
Operator: Empresa Provincial de Energia de Cordoba
Configuration: 4 X 12 MW Francis, 1 X 4.5 MW Kaplan
Operation: 1956
T/G supplier: Asgen
EPC: Agua y Energia, Sollazo Hermanos, Techint
Quick facts: This hydro complex is 90km south of Cordoba city. There are two dams and two penstocks feeding two powerhouses. The first plans for use of the Rio Los Molinos for irrigation date to 1889, but it was not until 1942 that a multipurpose scheme was devised and this was proposed to the government in 1948. Excavation on the first dam began in 1949 and it was completed in Oct 1953, followed by the second dam in 1954. The first powerhouse went online on 20 Oct 1957.

Photograph by Facundo Di Pascuale and courtesy of EPEC
Posted 7 Feb 2009

Pichi Picun Leufu
Location: Rio Negro
Operator: Pecom Energia
Configuration: 3 X 85 MW Kaplan
Operation: 1999
T/G supplier: IMPSA
EPC: Intertechne Consultores Associados, Odebrecht
Quick facts: This plant is on the Rio Limay 20km downstream from Piedra del Aguila and the turbines commissioned in Aug, Sep, and Dec 1999. The dam is 1,045m long and 54m high and incorporates a spillway with six sluices. A 500kV transmission line connects to Buenos Aires province and the Federal Capital. Several lengthy consruction delays were encountered due to funding issues. The site is 230km from Neuquén in an arid region where temperatures range from  -20°C to 40°C and the winds blow up to 150 km/h. This was Odebrecht's first project in the country.

Photograph courtesy of ORSEP
Posted 20 Jan 2005

Piedra del Aguila
Location: Neuquen
Operator: Hidroelectrica Piedra del Aguila
Configuration: 4 X 350 MW Francis
Operation: 1993-1994
T/G supplier: Hyenergo, Electrosila
EPC: Electrowatt, Impregilo
Quick facts: This is the largest hydroelectric station in Argentina and cost about $1.4bn. The dam is 170m high and 820m long and created a 292km² reservoir. The site is in the Patagonian Desert 1,100km southwest of Buenos Aires on the Rio Limay. Some 1,800km of transmission lines were constructed to evacuate the power.

Photograph courtesy of ORSEP
Posted 20 Jan 2005

Salto Andersen
Location: Rio Negro
Operator: Isolux Corsan Argentina
Configuration: 2 X 4.7 MW semi-Kaplan
Operation: 2011
T/G supplier: VA TECH
EPC: Isolux Corsan, Marre Srl
Quick facts: This project is an add-on to a dam originally built by AyEE in 1954 on the Río Colorado. It will connect to the regional 132kV grid. In 1996, MIGA supplied $2.3mn in support to original developer New World Power Corp.

Photograph courtesy of Isolux Corsan
Posted 10 Jul 2010

Salto Grande
Location: Entre Rios
Operator: Comision Technica Mixta de Salto Grande
Configuration: 14 X 135 MW Kaplan
Operation: 1979-1982
T/G supplier: Hydroenergo, Electrosila
EPC: Hydropower Institute
Quick facts: Salto Grande on the Rio Uruguai is a 50:50 venture of Argentina and Uruguay. For many years, the project supplied as much as half of Uruguay's electric power.

Photograph courtesy of CTM Salto Grande
Posted 12 Jan 2004

Yacyreta
Location: Corrientes
Operator: Entidad Binacional Yacyreta
Configuration: 20 X 155 MW Kaplan
Operation: 1994-1997
T/G supplier: Voith, Impsa, CGE, Siemens, Toshiba, Ansaldo, Hitachi
EPC: Harza, Impregilo
Quick facts: The Yacyreta power station is a 50:50 joint venture of Argentina and Paraguay and remains entirely state-owned despite efforts to find private investors. The EPC consortium numbered almost a dozen companies and they built 500km of 40m closure dams plus the main dam and powerhouse facilities. In Jan 2005, the owners finally agreed the plan for boosting Yacyreta output to full design capacity. This required raising the dam water level to 83m from the 76m level at completion and necessitated the relocation of 10,000 households, several industrial plants, a rail line, an airport and a harbor. In Feb 2011, the water reached design level allowing full operation for the first time. The project was then declared compete after 37yrs of development and construction.

Photograph courtesy of Entidad Binacional Yacyreta
Re-posted 18 Oct 2006

Abbreviations

Data: industcards, Platts UDI World Electric Power Plants Data Base

Updated 02-Jan-2013

Home