Mpumalanga transmission line
Towering infrastructure development across Africa
EPC turnkey transmission line contractor Babcock has been awarded an Eskom contract for Section A of the construction of the 400 kV Hendrina-Gumeni transmission line in Mpumalanga.
With a succession of projects from 66 kV to 765 kV successfully delivered over the past 60 years, Babcock offers point-to-point solutions for the delivery of power from source to destination and is vertically integrated to be able to manufacture and supply steel lattice structures, substations and line hardware. Its offering is based on turnkey engineering, manufacturing, testing, project management and construction of high voltage overhead transmission lines.
The 85 km Hendrina-Gumeni line has been divided into two sections which will be constructed simultaneously. Section A is approximately 42 km and stretches from the 400 kV Hendrina power station, about 40 km south of Middelburg, in Mpumalanga, towards the Gumeni transmission substation, close to the town of Waterval Boven. About 70% of the line will run parallel to the Arnot-Gumeni 275 kV transmission line.
“Scoring an adjudication result of 97% for the Hendrina-Gumeni contract is a direct result of our commitment to creating a win-win relationship with Eskom,” says Gary Whalley, MD of Babcock’s Transmission business. “The Eskom adjudication team complimented our winning bid and the level of professionalism of the submission, which is what underpins the Babcock Customer Centricity ethos.
“Owing to the nature of our business, the skillsets required by the personnel who will execute this project are unique. The opportunity for skills development and job creation both on site and in our tower, forging, galvanizing and component manufacturing facilities, is without doubt a national economic enabler, given the fact that the South African economy has experienced an inertia in the ability to create much needed jobs. In striving to maintain business excellence, while facing increasing pressure for skills preservation, this project comes at just the right time to ensure the preservation of these critical skills and competencies in our industry.
“At the same time, Babcock has a social obligation to empower the communities in and around Hendrina with skills development and we expect this will prove to be a very rewarding element of the project.”
Powering infrastructure development across Africa
Since its inception, the company has been the largest supplier of transmission lines in southern Africa. Today Babcock is a leader in this field, trusted to deliver major network infrastructure projects safely, on time and within budget, providing an end-to-end service focused on high-voltage overhead lines and steel lattice towers for electricity transmission infrastructure throughout the African continent.
With a world class health and safety culture, the company operates in a safety critical environment, adhering to the strictest health and safety guidelines. The overriding objective is to effectively enable the transmission of safe, reliable and secure power essential to the development of Africa’s critical infrastructure. Babcock’s transmission business is ISO 9001, OHSAS18001 and ISO14001 accredited and its comprehensive electronic quality, safety and environmental management system is audited regularly. All hot-dip galvanised items carry the ISO 1641 stamp.
The transmission line business operates from an extensive manufacturing facility in Gauteng, with 30 000 square metres under roof and another 19 000 square metres of loading and sorting bays under overhead cranes. A dedicated team operates the company’s extensive packaging yard, where high voltage lattice transmission line towers and line hardware, as well as telecommunication towers, are packaged securely in preparation for the journey to project sites. To accomplish this, the team draws on its considerable experience in logistics, with regard to specific packaging requirements and logistics supply chain management for local and international customers.