Indian electric utility National Thermal Power Corp (NTPC) has awarded local contractor Patel Engineering the construction contract for key civils works on the 520MW Tapovan Vishnugad project.

The value of the contract is US$108M, and the contract period is 48 months.

The scope of the work includes construction of the surge shaft, pressure shaft, penstock, tailrace tunnel, switchyards and the power house. The plant will house four 130MW units.

Recently, Patel Eng also won a contract beyond India, in Algeria, worth US$153M to help design and build the Mehouane dam. The contract was awarded by Agence Notionale Des Barrage Et Tranfets.

NTPC told analysts in August that it aims to have almost 9GW of installed hydro capacity in ten years. In addition to Tapovan Vishnugad, the other key projects in development are the 800MW Koldam scheme and the 600MW Loharinag Pala project.

But by far the biggest hydro scheme being planned is the 4GW Etalin project in Arunachal Pradesh, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for which was signed a year ago with the state government. The MoU also included construction of the 500MW Attunli project.