RPCL CAPACITY BUILDING
RPCL continuously improves on its performance by training and developing capacity of its employees as a means to meeting identified skills and competence demand and career growth.
In November 2020, RPCL trained Environment and Social Safety employees on Safety, Health, Environmental & Quality Management (SHEQM)’s Theories, Principles, Stimulations and Study Tour including SHE Legislation, Technical Safety, Maintenance & Organization, Health Management for Projects and Contracted work, Social and Global Environmental issues, Introduction to EIA, Elements of EIA and Guidelines of EIA in industrial sector like Energy sector with regard to International Standards using examples of World Bank safeguard policies during project implementation with examples of the Regional Rusumo Falls Hydroelectric Project.
Study Tour was undertaken at the 180 MW Victoria Falls Power Station located in Livingstone, Zambia. The plant was built and commissioned at different stages from 1938-1972 by the British during colonial times. It is now owned and operated by ZESCO Zambian state utility company. The owners maintained and upgraded the Plant’s control system; it has an emergency plan flow charts displayed, warning signage in every building so that every employee who works there is aware of the risks and dangers in the place.
RPCL Staff were also trained on Hydropower Plant Operations Control categorized into three major sessions which were class, laboratory sessions, and course-related study tours at Kafue Gorge Regional Training Centre in Zambia. All of these sessions have been very effective in acquiring knowledge and helpful for Staff at competitive training Centre in the region.
During class sessions, trainees discussed theory topics on Hydropower Station Overview, Hydropower Waterways Gates and Valves, Turbines, Power Plant Operations, Load Curves, Load Factor and Plant Factor, Water Management, Safety in Operations and Interlocks, Power Station Control, Turbine and Generator Control, Auxiliary Supplies and Generator and Transformer Protection.
Additional courses included Power Plant operations, Normal Start/Stop sequence, Water Management, Abnormal conditions in a Power Plant, Turbine and Generator control, Auxiliary supplies, Power Plant and Power System Simulations as well as Power Protection.
RPCL Trainees put practices during Power Plant and Power System Simulations class, stop sequence for generating units, and used the SCADA System. The simulation run in the SCADA System was of the Zambian National Electric network at Peak Load, where the generation was almost equal to the load. Trainees learned how to increase the generation and load shed part of the network without causing disturbances on the grid.
After this capacity building, RPCL Staff now have a better understanding of Hydropower Operation and Control, how to use the SCADA System for monitoring and controlling power. In Power Protection, the importance of having the same manufacturer for the distance relays, differential protection and telecommunication on transmission lines.
RPCL Staff visited 2 Hydropower Plants and noticed that a log boom can be used to prevent floating debris from going into the intakes, which can be considered to address Water Hyacinth issue at the Regional Rusumo Falls Hydroelectric Project. RPCL trainees learnt new technologies at the Leopards Hill Substation like the bypass disconnector Switch, and the Disconnecting Circuit Breaker.