The original Whakamaru power station was commissioned in the mid-50's and has operated continuously since. During this period the plant has never been subjected to a complete overhaul.
In 2010, Mighty River Power undertook a Class 4 overhaul of G1. Edison was retained to provide technical support and an overall coordination role for this work. The Edison team faced some unique challenges in this project as numerous contractor companies were employed to carry out specialist tasks on site. Managing the 45-50 additional people on site at any one time was one such challenge.
Throughout this project three of the four generators were kept running while the upgrades were taking place. Normally, commissioning of an upgrade is a relatively straight forward process but in this case it required a detailed coordination process due to the significant amount of equipment being replaced.
Edison undertook a full strategic planning process with Mighty River Power and its contractors to ensure a concise plan was written and agreed prior to commissioning activities starting.
A key requirement was ensuring the operating staff were kept involved throughout the process. Edison was responsible for the overall commissioning plan which involved a very complex programme due to the coordinating of five separate contractors.
A key part of this role was quality controlling each step before the next team could be approved to begin their upgrade activity. One system implemented to achieve the successful results was the weekly site coordination meetings facilitated by Edison to ensure they project kept running to plan. An Edison project coordinator was on site throughout the project to oversee and coordinate the works.
Andrew Rye, Mighty River Power