Equipment for Avce power plant will be supplied and installed by a consortium consisting of Melco, Rudis and Sumitomo, with the main construction works to be carried out by Slovenian construction companies Primorje and SCT. The two contracts together account for approximately 70% of the total investment, which is estimated as US$106M.

The public opening of tenders took place in March and April 2005. Six tenders by four bidders were received for civil works, while three bidders submitted their tenders for the supply and installation of equipment.

Soske Elektrarne, the company operating the plant, said that contracts for the remaining equipment are to be agreed later this year, and tenders are being evaluated for the implementation of the pipeline and hydromechanical equipment and for the manufacture, supply and installation of lifting equipment.

Preliminary works for Avce, which will generate 426GWh/yr, started in December 2004 and were completed in January this year. The plant is scheduled to be bought online in 2008.

Soske Elektrarne, a subsidiary of the Holding Slovenske Elektrarne (HES) group, said that Avce is notable for featuring a ‘varspeed’ reversible turbine-pump generator, chosen because it enables adjustable operation of the pumped storage plant depending on how much power is available from the grid.