Almaty hydroelectric power chain: mountain purity power for 65th anniversary of “almaty power stations” jsc almaty hydroelectric power chain


Even according to the nowadays criteria the speed of construction and its duration impress, therewith it was the war time, and first postwar years were not very easy.

-Almost all heavy works were executed manually, processes were weakly mechanized, - Henry Yurievich Borodin says, the director of the Chain in 1983 – 1987. – Work was practically executed by the method of people’s construction: generally certain types of heavy land, rock and concrete works were imposed to the enterprises of AlmaAta. According to the newspapers of that time six thousand people worked at the Chain construction throughout the day and night. It was the selfless work on the all stages, upwards the project stage, because projecting and pre-construction activities were begun by the department of the “Gidroproject” institute in Leningrad in 1942. The project applicability had already become obvious in 20s: the erection of the Alma-Ata Hydroelectric Power Chain had already been provided by the GOELRO plan in 1920, because in 30s Alma-Ata Central Power Plant (nowadays, CHP Plant 1) was the only source of power supply in Almaty. 1) The necessity of the essential increase of capacities occurred due to the burning need to provide power for plants and enterprises, which were evacuated from the European part of USSR. That’s why at the beginning of the war the USSR State Defense Committee made a decision on the construction of Hydroelectric Power Chain in mountains. Zhalel Isinkulovich Baigisiev took the head of the construction, who had worked as the KazSSR Deputy Minister of Education on the major construction work.

The establishment of the first phase of the Chain had practically liquidated the electric power emergency in the system. During the next decade the chain continued developing: in October 1953 “Ozernaya” Hydroelectric Power Plant 1 – the highest-pressure hydroelectric power plant of the whole former USSR was commissioned, in June 1959 - Hydroelectric Power Plant 2. At that moment the construction of hydroelectric power plants, which use water resource power of the Big Almaty gorge, was finished. The last plant of the Chain, Talgar Hydroelectric Power Plant, was commissioned in 1960. The whole Hydroelectric Power Chain became the strong power support of the soaring city: till 1960 power generation of the Hydroelectric Power Chain plants was equal to 50 – 60 percent in the total balance of the Almaty power system. The specialist have calculated that 13,5 milliard kW/h of power were generated during the whole period of existence of the Alma-Ata Hydroelectric Power Chain, what is equivalent to the covering of the modern Almaty and region consumption for two years!

-In addition, the Hydroelectric Power Chain allows for heat power plants of Almaty to turn individually – Bolat Ualihanovich Mukaev, the Managing Director, points this strategically important feature. – This is applicable in case of system emergencies with power system decomposition, intersystem communication loss, total outage of sources, because during such emergency circumstances Alma-Ata Hydroelectric Power Chain will provide power supply for house load of the nearest heat power plants.

History of the Chain erection during the most difficult years for the republic is an example of courage, dedication, professionalism of its constructors. The names of people, who has constructed and commissioned the Hydroelectric Power Chain, are proudly called at the enterprise. Those, who supported and are supporting for its high performance. Those, who having got the professionalism lessons here, consequently succeed in different fields. Here people remember about 19 year’s old cadets Vasiliy Shevchenko and Ualihan Mukaev, who took part in the construction of the first plant of the Chain in 1943. The first one became the Chairman of the Committee for State Security under the Council of Ministers of Kazakh SSR afterwards. And Ualihan Mukaev became the founder of the power engineers’ dynasty. His son Bolat is the Director of the Hydroelectric Power Chain. At the enterprise you will be for sure told about Boris Rastoskuev, who was sent to the Chain construction. His mission continued ten years. He finished it as the Engineer in Chief of the current Hydroelectric Power Plants of the Chain. In 1955 Boris Aleksandrovich was sent to the construction of the Krasnoyarsk Hydroelectric Power Plant. He had worked for more than 30 years there, having begun as the Head of the management of the plant under construction. And from 1967 till 1989 he was the irreplaceable Director of the plant. 

But even when he had already been in Enisei, he remembered the Alma-Ata construction warmly. In “Krasnoyarsk Hydroelectric Power Plant: people and achievements” (Krasnoyarskaya GES: lyudi I sversheniya) book he wrote about Alma-Ata Hydroelectric Power Chain as follows: “Power engineering of Alma-Ata was made by people, thanks to whom this hardest subdivision had covered the gigantic distance from the low power diesel turbine to the complex of the different electric power plants in recordingly short time. The names of N.M. Makarov, S.S. Naboka, I.V. Fayerman, A.O. Arystanov, R.M. Sabotaev, B.A. Rastoskuev, G.H. Hairulin and many others will stay forever among the first-movers of the capital power engineering, who had presented us the allpowerful electricity”.

…Nowadays the Hydroelectric Power Chain is in service and as usual supplies power for the city and region. Therewith many of the first installed hydraulic units are in operation, and specialists point the quality of the construction and equipment. Whereas the part of the electric power, annually generated by the Hydroelectric Power Chain in bulk of production of “Almaty Power Stations”, JSC, where it participates, doesn’t exceed 5 – 6 percent. This is a wonderful example of efficiency and reliability of renewable green power sources usage. Here people believe that the future of the Hydroelectric Power Chain is prospective. That’s why the Feasibility Study and Design and Estimate Documentation on the reconstruction and modernization of the obsolete equipment are developing nowadays. Modernization will allow both renewing the Hydroelectric Power Chain and increasing its performance.

Saida Aihanova

“Vecherniy Almaty” newspaper, dated August 8, 2013, No 101