The dam is one of four hydroelectric dams that are part of the 351MW Tapoco Project and the upgrades improve its efficiency and energy output besides enhancing its life span by another 40-50 years.

Alcoa Power Generating hydro operations manager Mark Gross said that the project demonstrates a partnership and cooperation among private industry and government to protect and sustain renewable energy for future generations.

"The Cheoah Modernization project directly supports green energy growth, the use of renewable energy resources and enhanced recreational opportunities," added Gross.

"We are pleased to be able to announce that Cheoah Dam has actually demonstrated a 50 percent increase – from 88 MW to 132 MW."

Modernization at the Cheoah Dam included elimination of circuit breaker oil, minimizing transformer oil need and reducing cooling water requirements by using air-cooled transformers in addition to capacity improvements.