Malta Upper Stage Pumped Storage Power Plant

The VERBUND power plant Malta Upper Stage is a pumped storage power plant in Brandstatt in the municipality of Malta in Carinthia.

* Source: ENTSO-E Production 2017

Located here is the highest dam in Austria, with a height of 200 metres. It is also the tallest curved wall in Europe. The Galgenbichl powerhouse, at the foot of the Galgenbichl dam, is equipped with two machine sets with a total capacity of 120 MW.

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Owner VERBUND Hydro Power GmbH
Operator VERBUND Hydro Power GmbH
Commissioning 1979
Type Pumped-storage power plant
Country Austria
Region Carinthia
Waters Drava, Kölnbreinbach
Output 120 MW
Annual output 37,870 MWh
Turbine Francis
Connectivity No fish bypass
Turbines and generators: The power plant is equipped with two 70,000 kVA motor generators, beneath which lie the 62,800 kW pump turbines connected by a vertical shaft. What is special here is the design of the machines as isogyre pump turbines, which enables a much lower installed height than conventional pump turbines through the combination of pump and turbine in a single housing. This plant was the prototype for a combined pump-turbine machine of this size.

Transformers: Two 70 MVA main transformers convert the generated energy from 8.8 kV to 110 kV. The connection between transformer and open-air transmission line is formed by a 110 kV indoor switchgear.

Kölnbrein reservoir: The Kölnbrein annual storage facility has a capacity of 200 million m3 and a final level at 1,902 metres. The Kölnbreinsperre, a double curved wall, forms the dam for the reservoir. With a height of 200 metres, it is not only the highest valley dam in Austria but also one of the highest curved walls in Europe. 

The power plant was built between 1974 and 1979 with the financial participation of Kelag and Energie AG.