Direction Nationale de L’Energie du Mali
Burgess & Niple is leading an international engineering consulting team in the development of a feasibility study to successfully integrate a new hydroelectric power plant into the existing Markala Dam. This project, sponsored by the U.S. Trade and Development Association, involves clean energy production and socioeconomic improvement, and emphasizes better use of water resources through U.S. technology.
Located on the Niger River, between the capital city of Bamako and Timbuktu, the power plant will be built in one or more bays of the existing dam, replacing some of the movable gates with the power plant structure. The dam develops a usable head of approximately 4.2 meters of head (14 ft.) with a power plant of 10 to 15 megawatts feasible for the site.
The study involves reevaluation of previous studies, development of preliminary plans, writing performance/quality control specifications, designing transmission wire interconnect to the national grid, and establishing feasible financial and environmental plans.
Important parameters in the study are the means of adapting the structure to the existing dam, foundation considerations, available flows in consideration of natural hydrology of the basin, contributions of reservoir storage, and diversions for use of the water, primarily for irrigation.