The ÖBB Tauernmoos power plant ensures the in-house production of environmentally friendly energy from hydropower to cover the power peaks in the traction supply system.

In order to meet the increasing requirements of traction power supply, ÖBB-Infrastruktur AG intends to increase the capacity of the Tauernmoos pumped storage power plant in Salzburg’s Stubach Valley by an additional 170 megawatts. The power plant expansion will connect the two existing reservoirs Tauernmoossee and Weißsee and increase annual energy production to a total of 460 gigawatt hours. The required traction power is covered 100 percent by renewable energies, which are largely generated from domestic hydropower.

The average difference in elevation between the two high-alpine reservoirs is approx. 220 m and has not been used for energy purposes to date. Thanks to the approx. 170 MW higher nominal capacity of the Tauernmoos power plant, it will be possible in future to generate energy from the inflows to the Weißsee on the one hand and to store energy by pumping water up into the Weißsee on the other hand, without changing the officially approved operation of the existing facilities.

The planned structural, mechanical and electrical power plant facilities are arranged in a system of caverns, galleries and structures, most of which are underground. With the excavated material (granite gneiss) that will be produced during construction, the quarry, which was built 40 years ago to build the Tauernmoos dam, can be filled in and recultivated.

An underground 110 kV cable system is planned for the supply and discharge of electrical energy between the existing high-voltage grids of ÖBB and Austrian Power Grid AG. This ensures unrestricted energy transmission all year round, invisible in the landscape.

The positive EIA amendment notification also includes the Stubachtal access tunnel, which in future will connect the existing facilities and the new Tauernmoos power plant with the public road network at Enzingerboden in a weatherproof and efficient manner. Following the amendment notification, the ÖBB’s implementation decisions were made in 2018. Construction is scheduled to start in autumn 2020.

The BERNARD Group has been commissioned with the design services for the EIA permit application, the tender design, and the execution design.

Wolfgang Holzer, BERNARD Group