Vuzenica power plant: power plant with the first Slovene turbine
The Vuzenica HPP is the second generating stage of the Drava River chain. Construction of the power plant began in the autumn of 1947.
Lack of manpower, machinery and funds were the reasons that the plant's planned finish date was extended. The first Kaplan turbine installed in the Vuzenica HPP was manufactured by Litostroj and it began operation at the end of 1953, though it was fully completed only in 1957. After the refurbishment of the Upper Drava power plants in the nineteen nineties, net capacity of the plant was increased by 11,2 MW. The plant makes use of a 13,73 m available head and, with a net capacity of 55,6 MW, it has an annual generation of 247 million kWh.
The damming of the Drava River led to the creation of a 11,9 km long reservoir extending to the Dravograd HPP further upstream. It contains 7,1 million m3 of water of which 1,8 million m3 is used for the generation of electric power.
The dam structure is composed of three turbine piers placed between four spillways as well as a left and right bank building. Each turbine pier accomodates a vertical Kaplan turbine with a generator above it. A space is reserved on the powerhouse level for the unit transformer which is connected to the outside switchyard by 110 kV cables.
Four spillways, each with a width of 18,75 m, closed by the hooked gates made of two plates, have a total spillage capacity of up to 5600 m3/s of water. The hook gates, suspended on Gall's chains, are driven by electric hoists.
A gantry crane is installed on the dam structure, required for the raising and lowering of heavier equipment and components.
On a plateau above the power plant, at a distance of 200 m, there is a 110 kV outdoor switchyard with double busbars, six line bays and three generator bays.