Generators Refurbished at Columbia River Dam - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Generators Refurbished at Columbia River Dam

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PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) - Workers at the McNary Lock and Dam on the Columbia River say a $64 million project to refurbish the massive generators is on schedule to be wrapped up next year.
The goal is to make the generators good for another half century.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers built McNary, and the dam's 14 hydroelectric generators went online in 1957.
The enormous copper coils in the generators - called windings - are nearing the end of their life spans. Each winding holds about 45,000 pounds of copper.
Four have failed since 1999 and were replaced. The agency has been replacing two more a year since 2010. Most of the work begins in July when river flows drop and runs through December.