Power plants are usually fairly self-sufficient when it comes to their own repair work. But violent weather caused damages that made one facility (which shall remain nameless in this article) look outside for help.

A June 1999 tornado damaged a 115,000-gpm cooling tower at this plant in the Midwest — one of the six main cooling towers at the plant — completely destroying the unit.

A local cooling tower company was contacted to repair and rebuild the towers. This company, in turn, contacted Aggreko Industrial Cooling Towers to provide temporary cooling towers for use during the rebuilding effort.

Aggreko met with the cooling tower company the next day and immediately shipped the units, replacing the original unit with 46 1,000-ton modular cooling towers.

In addition, the company provided two 2,500-kVA transformers, electrical distribution equipment, and a complete piping system. The units brought the plant’s power generation back to maximum capacity in eight days, and remained on-site through September.

“The size of the project basically eliminated everyone else from the pool of eligible companies,” said Billy Childers, Aggreko Industrial Cooling Tower Center national manager.

“We had the project team and the equipment necessary to support the project.”

The company’s modular cooling tower design allowed the equipment to be placed in the limited space. The design also features an elevated cold-water basin, which eliminates the need for additional pumps.

“We decided to utilize the modular design as opposed to a mounted unit because it saves space, enables better water flow, and allows the user to combine as many units as necessary,” Childers explained.

The power company was able to save an enormous amount in electricity costs each day. The electricity would have cost the company hundreds of thousands of dollars per day — literally millions during the duration of the project.