PPL Montana rehabs Montana hydroelectric plant

Smaller units with a combined capacity of 35 MW that were installed between 1910 and 1930 were replaced with a single, 60 MW unit, increasing the power generated by the plant by 70 percent

PPL Montana completed a three-and-a-half year, $209 million expansion at the 60 MW Rainbow hydroelectric power plant near Great Falls.

Smaller units with a combined capacity of 35 MW that were installed between 1910 and 1930 were replaced with a single, 60 MW unit, increasing the power generated by the plant by 70 percent. The project also included a new turbine with wider flow passages and fewer rotating surfaces to increase fish safety. The new unit began commercial operation on April 22.

PPL also completed a $38 million 100 kV interconnection project, which will connect PPL's five Great Falls hydro plants to NorthWestern Energy's grid.

This story was originally published in Power Engineering online. It was republished by permission.

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