Enormous Electrical Blackout Hits South America

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Enormous Electrical Blackout Hits South America

Postby toucana on June 16th, 2019, 3:43 pm 

Buenos Aires during blackout

A very large electrical grid failure affected five countries in South America earlier today.


Argentina and Uruguay lost power completely at around 7.07am local time this morning, and partial failures were reported in neighbouring Paraguay, Brazil and Chile as well, affecting around 50 million people in total

Edesur which is one of the largest private power suppliers in South America said the failure was unprecedented, and that its cause was still under investigation.

The initial point of failure appears to involve the large Yacyreta hydroelectric dam located on the border between Paraguay and and Argentina. This installation which was commissioned in 1994 was built by Paraguay, but around 95% of the power generated is normally exported to Argentina.

First reports indicate that a system fault in the transmission link between Paraguay and Argentina caused all the generators at the Yacyreta hydroelectric plant to shut down, and that the the abrupt loss of power destabilised the entire coastal grid transmission system within Argentina and blacked out Uruguay as well according to Uruguyan state utility UTE.

Electricity was restored in about half of the affected areas around 2.30pm according to the Energy Ministry in Argentina. Power is gradually returning to Buenos Aires and the greater capital region starting from the the strongest point within the grid system the Yacyreta, Chocon and Salto Grande hydroelectric power plants according to Transener, Argentina’s national grid operator

The power failures disrupted an important round of gubernatorial elections in the provinces of Santae Fe, Formosa and San Luis within Argentina. Only the elections in Tierra del Fuego were unaffected because their provincial power supplies are separate from the national grid
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Re: Enormous Electrical Blackout Hits South America

Postby PaulN on June 16th, 2019, 10:57 pm 

If you recall US intelligence reports on Russian cyberwarfare, one method they believe Russia wants to have set up (by means of implanted malware) is to hack the power grid so as to produce blackouts in key areas of the country during a national election. Definitely makes me wonder if they're testing out some tactics down there, where grids are less reliable and so hacking would not be the first explanation people would reach for. And the USA has also looked into similar methods, as part of the new and expanding cold war.

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