|Sector||water and energy|
|Country||Democratic Republic of Congo|
|Awards||1975 Ingersoll-Rand Italy|
|Construction||from 1968; to: 1981|
The Inga hydroelectric plant, built in two phases between 1968 and 1981, was designed to exploit the great energy resources of the River Zaire’s Inga rapids, estimated to be 40,000MW. Two headraces dug out of rock, one concrete buttress dam, 7 additional earth and rock dams, 2 concrete overflow dams and 6 steel penstocks each measuring 86 metres in length and 5.50 metres in diameter were built during the first construction phase (Inga 1, 1968-72). All of the above serves 6 60MW Francis units and an open-air plant measuring 135 by 15 metres with relative tailrace. This first phase of the project won the Ingersoll-Rand Italy award in 1975 for “its exceptional nature and magnificence together with the highly civilised purposes in relation to the country’s development and the considerable knock-on effects at an industrial level”.
The following phase, Inga 2 (1977-1981), involved the construction of an intake structure with a capacity of 2,200 m³/sec, a headrace and a reservoir enclosed by a main compact dam. Said dam features 8 metal penstocks each of a diameter of 8.5 metres linked to an open-air plant with 8 160MW Francis turbines, for a total installed power of 1,280MW. The total gross head is 58 metres with an annual production capacity of 9.6 billion kWh.
1975 Ingersoll-Rand Italy
The Inga dam which makes it possible to exploit the enormous amount of energy dispersed by the rapids of the River Zaire was praised for “its magnificence and exceptionality as well as for its highly civil aims related to the country’s development and the considerable knock-on effects at an industrial level”.