TVA's 90 this year
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TVA's 90 this year

Aug 12, 2023

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MUSCLE SHOALS, Ala. — This summer, TVA is offering the opportunity to tour several of their monumental dams in honor of their 90th anniversary.

TVA Wilson Dam Assistant Plant Manager Jimmy Springer said, "We can power about 360,000 homes."

President Biden also offered his congratulations to TVA for returning hope, opportunity, and dignity to the region and helping make the Tennessee Valley region the great community it is today.

First stop on the tour was the pipe gallery which is the auxiliary equipment. "A lot of our stuff is air operated. So we have 2 big air compressors, accumulator tank, air dryers," Springer explained.

Moving to the next stop, the power generation facility , which is crucial to the operation. "This houses 18 of our 21 generating units," he added.

So, if for some reason the power went down in this facility, would that affect the powering of homes? "Losing our generators alone would not impact it greatly because it's an inner connected grid that gets its power from several different, different generating units," Springer continued.

The final stop of the tour was Wilson Dam, and as a part of the 'TVA turns 90' celebration TVA selected 20 people from a random drawing of applicants to join the Wilson Dam tour. Florence resident Will Rayburn is one of the winners. "The first one I called was my fiancée because I put her down for it and she's like, you really got that? And I said, heck yeah, I did."

On average, more than a thousand people register for the twenty slots on each tour, and this summer, TVA is all about offering public tours of some of their dams, allowing the community to see inner workings of a dam, and learn how they produce clean hydropower while ensuring the health of the waterways. "It's just pretty cool how it's built and how it hasn't changed in over close to 100 years," said Rayburn.