JERUSALEM, May 26 (Xinhua) -- A large-scale pumped storage power plant in northeastern Israel reached the final stage of construction on Wednesday, as a 200-ton rotor, crucial to turning water into electricity, was smoothly installed on a generating unit.
The 344-MW Kokhav Hayarden pumped storage hydropower plant, located near the city of Beit She'an and some 120 km away from Tel Aviv, is expected to be operational in early 2023.
The project is built to become the largest pumped storage power plant in Israel, and it is also the lowest pumped storage power plant in the world, as its powerhouse lies 275 meters below sea level, according to building contractor Power Construction Corporation of China (PCCC).
Featuring two reservoirs at different heights, both with 3.1 million cubic meters, the hydropower plant can operate at a water head of 500 meters.
The facility, usually connected to a grid, uses the off-peak power to pump water to its upper reservoir, and release the water to the lower one whenever it needs to generate electricity to help relieve peak demand on the grid.
"During off-peak hours, it pumps water from the lower reservoir to the upper and stores it, and generates electricity with gravitational energy when needed," PCCC project manager Han Hongwei told Xinhua.
As a widely-recognized green and cost-effective method to store electric power, the pump storage plant will help Israel reinforce grid stability once put into use, Han noted. Enditem