The first phase of the modernization project will include the upgrade of two of the dam’s five power generation units.

The first phase objectives for the project are to purchase four new high-efficiency turbines, generators and transformers, upgrade the balance of plant equipment, and complete installation of two units.

Another two units will be upgraded during phase two of the project and will increase Cheoah’s total capacity to 140MW.

The modernization effort will increase the dam’s efficiency and energy output, and it will also increase the dam’s life by at least another 40-50 years, Alcoa said.