Gayaza High School Science club organized an educational tour for students and teachers to Karuma HPP on 28th September 2018 with an aim of exposing the students who are future engineers to the different engineering possibilities as they focus on their future. As a school the best way of breaking the stereotype that Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields are for male is through such tours since they expose the students. They were able to appreciate the convergence of different engineering fields ie. Civil, Electrical, Mechanical and Water at the power plant. The HPP is being built by SinoHydro Corporation Limited a Chinese firm with Uganda Electricity Generation Company Limited (UEGCL, http://www.uegcl.com) as the supervising body for the government of Uganda. The plant sits on 466 hectares and its expected capacity once complete will be 600MW.
PHOTO: GHS Students in the board room at Karuma HPP
The Project manager Eng. Albert Musooke Byaruhanga gave the students an overview of the project that is being funded my EXIM Bank from China to a tune of 85% and 15% funded by Ugandan government. After completion the power plant will produce 600MW and this will be the biggest in East and Central Africa.
PHOTO: Eng. Albert Musooke Byaruhanga, the Project manager explaining the project to students and teachers
The girls had a guided tour by experts on both ends of the project i.e Western and Eastern wings who explained every detail along the way from the aerial view to the work underground in the tunnel. The total combined distance of the tunnel is 26.5km which ranks among the top 10 underground power projects in the world.
Karuma Hydro Power plant covers a longer distance (26.5km) than the Kampala Northern bypass which is 23km. The tunneling system has been in existence in developed countries for a longtime with the largest being Robert – Bourassa generating station in northern Quebec, Canada with a capacity of 5,616MW.
The girls learnt a lot and were inspired by the great work ongoing and as the Club president, Ms. Daniella Wandera put in her words of appreciation” we appreciate the opportunity given to us to visit Karuma HPP and from what we have seen this project will have a positive impact on our country, Uganda.” Such visits are good and should be encouraged as they help the girls put into perspective the classroom work.