Milestones:Vucje Hydroelectric Plant, 1903
Vucje Hydroelectric Plant, 1903
IEEE Yugoslavia Section, Dedication: 2 5 June 2005
The Vucje hydroelectric plant began operation in 1903. It was the first in southern Serbia and the largest in the broader region. By transmitting alternating current of 50 Hz at 7000 volts--high for the period--over a distance of 16 km, it helped to transform the regional economy. It remained in continual use for over a century.
In the early 1900s a number of forward thinking individuals saw the possibilities of alternating current for use in providing electricity. One such group formed the Leskovac Electric Society in 1901. Located in southern Serbia, this group eyed the possibilities of tapping into the Vucjanka River to provide electric power. The Society was formed in order to raise capital to finance the building of a hydroelectric plant on the Vucjanka River. Over 150 stockholders invested in the project.
The contract to manufacture the turbines was awarded to Siemens & Halske, a well known company from Germany at the time. Two generators were each capable of producing 139 kW. The turbines, produced by J. M. Voith were 200 horsepower.
In 1931 the Vucje was expanded by adding a third generator, manufactured by Asea. It increased the output to 1,078 kW.