The clanging of cold steel. The slop of wet concrete. The roar of the dozer.
The sights and sounds of big-time construction can be found all over Basin Electric. The cooperative has been experiencing a flurry of construction activity not seen in decades.
All of the projects are needed to meet the membership’s growing demand for electricity. Following are highlights from a busy year building up the cooperative.
Dry Fork Station – Gillette, WY
Belfield-to-Rhame Transmission Project – Rhame and Belfield, ND
More transmission projects
Construction on the new peaking power plant began in July 2009. The transmission line segment was completed late that month. The power plant is scheduled to be complete in 2010.
The entire 136-mile 230-kilovolt Hughes Transmission Line was energized by early December 2009.
Dry Fork Station shift supervisor Terry Storbeck recorded this video of a helicopter working on the Hughes Transmission project in October. It shows how the contractor for the Hughes Transmission line, Timber Line Construction, installed transmission lines north out of the Dry Fork Station switchyard. This part of the Tongue River section of the 230-kilovolt conductor goes over the top of rail spurs. They were able to pull five lines in less than two hours.
The 230/115-kilovolt Rhame substation is a joint project with Basin Electric members Upper Missouri Generation & Transmission Cooperative and Slope Electric Cooperative. It’s one of nine substation projects to be energized by the end of the year.
NextEra’s Wilton Wind Energy Center Phase II – Wilton, ND
One of the final rotors is lifted into place at the second phase of the Wilton Wind Energy Center. All of the project’s 33 new turbines came online by October 31, 2009.
The project is owned and operated by NextEra Energy; Basin Electric purchases the output.
PrairieWinds 1 and Minot 2 – Minot, ND
Construction on two PrairieWinds ND 1 projects began in August 2009. PrairieWinds 1 is a 77-turbine, 115.5-megawatt project. Minot 2 is a three turbine, 4.5-megawatt project. Both projects are slated to be complete by late 2009.
Recovered Energy Generation Phase II – Culbertson, MT
Contracts to purchase the energy output of this 5.5-megawatt unit and another near Garvin, MN, brings the total to eight REG units along the Northern Border Pipeline, or 44 megawatts.
Leland Olds Station Scrubbers – Stanton, ND
The new chimney at Leland Olds Station houses two flues, one for each unit, to accommodate the power plant’s new scrubbers. Unit 2’s scrubber will come online in 2010, and Unit 1’s in 2011.
Antelope Valley Station Lime Slaking Project – Beulah, ND
Check out this Nov/Dec 2009 Basin Today story on our Web site: Building on a big year at Basin Electric