Kusile Power Station

Kusile Power Station


Mpumalanga, South Africa

  • Integrated water license application
  • Hydrology assessment
  • Geotechnical assessment
Project Overview

ESKOM is the principal supplier of electricity in South Africa. In order to meet the growing need for electricity, and in support of the growth and development strategy of the national government, ESKOM embarked on an expansion program to develop new power stations. Part of this expansion program included the building of a number of coal-fired power stations. A new 4,800 MW coal-fired power station near Witbank was proposed.

The Kusile Power Station Project comprises the construction, commissioning, and operation of a coal-fired power station and its associated infrastructure in the Witbank area. The power station itself comprises six boiler/turbine sets with a nominal electricity generation capacity of approximately 4,800 MW (800 MW per unit).

Knight Piésold was responsible for two aspects: the Integrated Water License (IWULA) and the engineering of the stream diversion, pollution control dams, and ash dump.

Project Role

Knight Piésold developed the IWULA. The project required authorization of various water uses for a stream diversion, river crossings, and residue facilities. This involved the preparation of the full license application, including supporting documentation, extensive liaison and negotiation with the client and the Department of Water Affairs, as well as public participation.

The engineering scope involved the following:

  • Project management and liaison with ESKOM and Black & Veatch (ESKOM’s EPCM partner for Kusile)
  • Hydrology assessments for the power station site
  • Geotechnical assessment
  • Feasibility studies and conceptual designs for the dirty water dams, settling tanks, and stream diversion
  • Ash dump feasibility studies, including location and disposal options, ash deposition alternatives
  • Detail design and working drawings for all facilities in the scope
  • Bills of quantities and design reports for all
  • Work method statements for all
  • Liaison with Knight Piesold’s environmental and geohydrological groups each of which had separate purchase orders from ESKOM (IWULA and site geohydrology modeling)
  • Structural design for ash dump rail culverts and for Coal Stockyard (CSY) and Station Dirty Dam (SDD) and appurtenant concrete structures