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The Second Decade

Video Clip

1933 - ESCOM's tenth anniversary is commemorised

1934 - Construction starts on Klip Power Station. Dr FE Kanthack, a consulting engineer, pioneers the design of cooling towers that use minimal water. Salt River Power Station more than doubles in size when two 20MW sets are added.  Construction begins on transmission lines and substations in Rand Extension Undertaking, a 29000 square kilometre area stretching from Delmas to Klerksdorp.


Klip Power Station after completion

1935 - High voltage generation introduced to South Africa when Salt River increases its capacity with another 20MW set bringing its generating capacity to 90 MW.  33kV lines carry the system to Darling, Malmesbury and Wellington, through Worchester to the Hex River Valley.

1936 - First issue of ESCOM Magazine is printed. First supplies of electricity to the Rand Extension Undertaking.

1937 - Escom House opened by Prime Minister Jan Smuts.  More than 2 500 million units of electricity sold.

1938 - Table Bay Power Station in a pooling agreement with Salt River; this demonstrates the advantage of interconnected power stations and centralised control.

1939 - Extensions to Congella Power Station commence.  Construction begins on the Vaal Power Station.  The 2nd World War begins.  

1940 - Despite steel shortages, ESCOM increases its distribution system using innovative alternatives such as concrete pylons, which reduce costs and improve safety. Klip Power Station is completed.


ESCOM House, officially opened in 1937

1941 - The ship carrying Congella's turbine of the 40 000 kW turbo-alternator set is sunk by a German submarine, delaying the completion of Congella extension.

1942 - The ESCOM Annual Report mentions the setting up of the Pension Fund