In July 2021, Ivanhoe Mines Energy DRC, a sister company of Kamoa Copper tasked with delivering reliable, clean, renewable hydropower to the Kamoa-Kakula Copper Mining Complex, signed an addendum of the financing agreement under a public-private partnership with the Democratic Republic of Congo’s state-owned power company, La Société Nationale d’Electricité (SNEL), to upgrade a major turbine (#5) in the existing Inga II hydropower facility on the Congo River.
This partnership successfully refurbished and modernized the Mwadingusha hydropower plant in 2021, which now provides 78 MW to the national grid.
The Inga II project is expected to produce an additional 178 MW of renewable hydropower, providing the Kamoa-Kakula Copper Complex and associated smelter with sustainable electricity for Phase 3 and future expansions, while also benefitting local communities. The Inga II upgrade project is scheduled for completion in the fourth quarter of 2024.
The work at Turbine #5 will include the upgrade and replacement of all the unit line from intake equipment, turbine, speed governor, alternator, voltage regulator and transformers (water to wire).
The Inga II Turbine #5 project has much lower unitary cost per megawatt produced ($0.58/MW) compared to the completed Mwadingusha project ($1.45/MW).
The engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contract for the upgrading of Turbine #5 was signed in Heidenheim, Germany, on April 26, 2022, by SNEL and Voith Hydro, a leading German hydropower company.
KAMOA COPPER BREAKS GROUND ON THE KAMOA CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE FACILITY
Construction now is underway at the Kamoa Center of Excellence, which once in operation, aims to create a sustainable and community-centered learning environment in the heart of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Kamoa Copper’s leadership team hosted the groundbreaking ceremony in December 2021.
A recent survey indicated that the current situation regarding the local Kolwezi high school learners’ desire to study “abroad” must improve for the long-term future of the country. In response, there is a desire to retain and develop local talent and to create a situation where in-country higher education becomes the norm. The Kamoa Centre of Excellence will be a world-class facility, developed on the outskirts of Kolwezi, offering degrees, diplomas and short courses in collaboration with internationally accredited institutions.
The project will take place over multiple phases to allow for departments, as well as sports facilities, to be added over time. Initial curriculum offerings will be aligned with the mining industry i.e., mining engineering, French-English language courses, and much more. Phase 1 will include just over 100 students, with enrollment to commence in 2023. Kamoa Copper has committed to fund the construction of this new facility, including interior furnishings and the technological setup.
The Kamoa Centre of Excellence will be a future-ready learning environment hosted within an adaptable campus. This community advanced, private institution of higher learning will create a legacy of collaboration, supporting local infrastructure and economic growth.
Aerial view of the site selected for the Kamoa Centre of Excellence, where early construction works have commenced.