More hydropower from existing plant

Panoramic view over the High Mountain Reservoirs at Mooserboden near Kaprun, Salzburg, Austria

Tractebel’s hydropower experts are designing resource-efficient pumpedstorage plant in Austria, the Limberg III, which will increase the output of the Kaprun district power plants by around one third.

For decades, the VERBUND power plant group in Kaprun has been supplying consumers with regenerative energy, both within Austria and beyond. A new pumped-storage power plant, Limberg III, will be built in the vicinity of Zell am See as an addition to the existing plants in the Kaprun district. The new plant connects the existing reservoirs Mooserboden (upper reservoir) and Wasserfallboden (lower reservoir) and, apart from the tunnel portals, is entirely situated underground. 

From tender to project design 

Following our Tractebel hydro experts’ successful completion of the tender phase, facility operator VERBUND Hydro Power GmbH entrusted our team to design the project. The new task comprises the construction design for the power and transformer caverns, the design of further power plant components and the coordination of design services. 

The Building Information Modelling (BIM) advantage 

To tackle this highly complex task, we will be using the digital BIM planning method, among other state-of-the-art tools. The application of this technology enhances efficiency by providing a virtual three-dimensional design displayed equally and unambiguously to all project partners. Additional attributes are defined in the model, for instance the construction sequence (4D), which can also be animated. 

Challenging design for a sustainable goal 

The Limberg III pumped-storage plant will deliver a total output of 480 MW from two variable-speed pump turbines, representing an increase of one third of the installed capacity of the VERBUND power plant group in Kaprun – and using existing resources. Tractebel’s participation in this project supports the aim of engineering a carbon-neutral future. 

“Our work will go a long way towards more efficient use of water resources in the existing power plant system, and make an important contribution to the expansion of renewable energies in Europe”, says Stefan Schmitt, Tractebel Head of Department Hydropower and Hydraulic Structure Design.


Our experts are designing a new, resource-efficient pumped-storage plant for sustainable power supplies using BIM technology. 


The new Limberg III pumped-storage plant (waterways shown as red lines) will increase the capacity of the existing plant by around one third, with zero use of any additional water resources. Image: VERBUND