Deanie Power Station

An underground hydro-electric power station remotely located at the western end of Loch Beannacharan in Glen Strathfarrar in Inverness-shire. Completed in 1963, it forms part of the Affric-Beauly Hydro-Electric Power Scheme and was built underground because of concerns for the scenic amenity of the area. The designer was architect James Shearer (1881 - 1962). It receives water through a 5½-mile / 9-km tunnel from Loch Monar, which provides a gross head of water of 113m (370 feet). Three streams are diverted into this tunnel along its course, before it terminates at a surge chamber prominent on the hillside above the power station - rather devaluing the efforts to hide the power station itself. Two 19 MW English Electric turbines are located in a machine hall excavated in rock beneath the ground, giving a total generation capacity of 38 MW. The underground chamber measures 28.7m (94 feet) in length, 13.1m (43 feet) wide, and 22.3m (73 feet) high and is accessed by a sloping vehicular access tunnel. Next to the arched stone-clad entrance is an electrical substation which increased the voltage to a level suited to long distance transmission. Built by the North of Scotland Hydro-Electric Board, the station is now operated by Scottish & Southern Energy Plc and generates approximately 92 million kW/hrs of electricity per annum.

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