Voith is to modernize Francis turbines and deliver new generators, control technology and electrical and mechanical power plant equipment in a EUR43M deal to refurbish the the Mount Coffee hydropower plant at the St. Paul River in Liberia, West Africa.

The project will be financed by the Liberian and Norwegian governments, the European Investment Bank, and Germany’s KfW Bank. The modernized units will generate a much higher output than the previous machines, with power output per unit to be raised by about one third.

The Mount Coffee run-of-river hydropower plant was built in the 1960s as the second and largest hydroelectric plant in Liberia. During the civil war, the plant and the dam, which is situated close to the capital Monrovia, was damaged; looting following the end of war destroyed the electrical and mechanical components. Only parts of the dam and the steel penstock remained intact. Monrovia has remained dependent on costly and limited diesel generation since 2006. The modernization of the power plant is therefore expected to contribute to economic progress in Liberia.

“After the setbacks Liberia had to endure we are pleased to be able to make a substantial contribution to the economic development of the country," said Dr. Roland Münch, CEO and President of Voith Hydro.