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Black Canyon Powerplant

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Related Projects & Facilities
Black Canyon Diversion Dam
Boise Project
Related Documents
Black Canyon Powerplant Performance (pdf)
RegionFacilities in Pacific Northwest | Pacific Northwest Home Page
RiverPayette River
PurposeBlack Canyon Dam and Power plant is a multiple purpose structure that provides benefits to both irrigation and power. The plant supplies power to irrigation loads in the Boise, Owyhee, and Minidoka Projects as part of Reclamation`s Southern Idaho Power System. Surplus power is delivered to the BPA for marketing and distribution to regional industries and municipalities.
FactsBlack Canyon Dam is a concrete gravity diversion dam with a structural height of 183 feet and gated ogee overflow spillway. Two direct-connected turbine-driven pumps, located in the powerhouse, serve the Emmett Irrigation District Canal on the north side of the river.
FactsThe powerplant has a capacity of 10,200 kilowatts. The nameplate capacity of 4,000 kW was increased to 5,100 kW for each generator with the installation of forced air cooling in 1972 and a stator rewind/upgrade in 1995.
FactsA short transmission line connects the Black Canyon Powerplant with the lines of the Idaho Power Company while another line supplies the `C` Line Canal Pumping Plant.
HistoryAgricultural activity in the Boise and Payette River Valleys started in the early 1880's when settlers began filing on desert lands under private irrigation enterprises. By 1900, about 148,000 acres had been placed under irrigation. It quickly became evident that storage and distribution systems were needed for a dependable water source to serve the lands at high elevations. In response to petitions by local irrigators, the Boise Project was initiated by the Reclamation Service shortly after the passage of the first Reclamation Act of 1902.
Present ActivitiesA feasibility study has been completed for a third generating unit. Design work is substantially completed and under review.
Future Planned Activities Construction of a third generating unit. Construction of a new switchyard.
Special IssuesThe powerplant is operated as a run-of-the-river plant, although operational releases from upstream reservoirs are coordinated to maximize power generation when possible. Siltation of the reservoir continues to be a long-term concern, but does not currently impact power operations or maintenance.
NERC RegionWestern Electricity Coordinating Council, Northwest Power Pool Area
PMA Service AreaBonneville Power Administration, Southern Idaho Power System
Plant TypeConventional
Powerhouse TypeAbove Ground
Turbine TypeFrancis
Original Nameplate Capacity8,000 kW
Installed Capacity10,200 kW
Year of Initial Operation1925
Age86 years
Net Generation62,388,151 kWh
(Fiscal Year)2011
Rated Head112 ft
Plant Factor70.8 percent
(Fiscal Year)2011
Production ModeIntermediate
Remotely OperatedYes
Project AuthorizationThe Secretary of the Interior authorized construction of the original Boise Project on March 27, 1905, and the Black Canyon Dam on June 26, 1922, under provision of the Reclamation Act of June 17, 1902 (32 Stat. 388).
Project PurposeThe Boise Project furnishes irrigation water to about 225,000 acres of project lands and 165,000 acres under special and Warren Act contracts. The irrigable lands are in southwestern Idaho and eastern Oregon.
Project PurposeThe 114,000 acres in the Payette Division receive water from the Payette River and surplus drainage from the Arrowrock Division. At Black Canyon Dam, water is diverted into the Black Canyon Canal and then into the distribution system. Storage features are Deadwood Reservoir on Deadwood River and Cascade Reservoir on the North Fork of the Payette. About 20 miles below Black Canyon Dam, a pumping plant lifts water from the main canal into a lateral system serving 26,014 acres.
First nameHoffman
Last nameVictoria
TitlePower O&M Manager
Phone (Fax)208 383-2275
Phone (Individual)208 383-2266

Last updated: Aug 01, 2012