Apart from its recently announced temporary desalination plant, the Koeberg nuclearpower station is working on a range of desalination projects, including a detailed feasibility study with the City of Cape Town on a large-scale desalination plant.If the feasibility study is successful, it will be followed up with a large-scale seawater desalination plant.
“This has the potential to not only augment the water needed for the Koeberg power station, but for the city’s water supplies as well,” says Koeberg power station manager Velaphi Ndlovu.Ndlovu says a data collection plant (DCP) is expected to get under way at the end of March, subject to statutory approvals, while a pilot production plant could kick off nine months after the confirmation of data from the DCP.
A temporary groundwater desalination plant was launched at Koeberg last week, with water supplied from the borehole system on its grounds. Eskom has appointed a contractor to build, own, operate and maintain the plant, which has a production capacity of 920 kilolitres a day of high-quality potable water which can be used for process purposes, as well as human consumption.A permanent groundwater desalination plant at Koeberg is currently in the commercial phase.
Nldovu and Eskom executives say they have learnt valuable lessons through their desalination projects and plans so far.Eskom launched its Water Resilience Strategy in March 2017 to mitigate business risk, to positively contribute to the efforts of the City of Cape Town and lessen their contribution to Day Zero.The nuclearpower station has notched up water savings of 35% since June 2017, but Ndlovu says it has the potential to save an additional 130 kilolitres of water a day.
“Eskom Koeberg has initiated a sustainable strategy to address the current water supply challenge in the Western Cape, enabling it to continuously provide safe electricity by having an overriding focus on nuclearsafety,” said Ndlovu.