# What was the capacity of Vemork power station?

The Vemork power station was once the largest power station in history and target of the famous Norwegian heavy water sabotage in WW2. Yet there seems to have very different data on its capacity.

Some say it's 108MW when finished by 1911, see Wikipedia:Vemork and NVE.NO:Vemork

Yet at the same time, there have been reports saying the station consists 10 units, each with 6MW, which should sum up to 60MW.

Can anyone give some comment on the actual capacity?

• Calculus addict note: 108 = 18 * 6. Maybe someone made a mistake and swapped a 8 for a 0 (or the other way around?) Jul 27, 2020 at 17:01
• Where do you see the 10 x 60MW figures? Jul 27, 2020 at 22:17
• "Ten 6-MW T/G sets were supplied by Voith and AEG (units 1-5) and Escher Wyss and Oerlikon (units 6-10)." From exactly the same Wikipedia article. T/G means "Turbine / Generator" here.
– user45348
Jul 28, 2020 at 0:35

According to both links you give, the plant was opened in 1911 with 108MW capacity. Any generators operating in 1911 will not be in operation today.

The NVE link further says that the plant was rebuilt in 1971 with a capacity of 200MW.

NVE also say that it was closely associated with the Saheim power station (geographically and operationally, it sounds like). Wikipedia reports this as having a capacity of 200MW.

Where do you see the 10 x 60MW figures?

German Wikipedia suggests the power of each generator is 16.400 HP, or ~12MW, bringing the total power to ~120MW. (cited source: Schweizerische Bauzeitung, Heft 24, Band 63/64 (1914)) That is not quite exactly the 108MW so there might be some confusion going on regarding watts and volt-amperes (or, in other word, effective vs. apparent power).

The local tourism website offers 14.500 HP to make everything more fun: https://www.visitrjukan.com/de/theme/rjukan-and-notodden-on-unesco-s-world-heritage-list/vemork-power-plant

Reading between the lines in that link, it is also possible that the turbine/generator sets were running slightly below max power in order to increase efficiency (i. e. electric power output per liter of water throughput).

So it seems to me that the 108MW figure is accurate at least for the nameplate / nominal power capacity, with actual capacity possibly differing by a couple of percent, as it does with any large power station.

• "~120kW" => "~120MW"
– Mast
Jul 28, 2020 at 7:49
• Thanks, I corrected it.
– user45348
Jul 28, 2020 at 12:41
• I've also added a comment on English Wikipedia to point out the inconsistency within their article.
– user45348
Jul 28, 2020 at 12:42