Lower Barun Khola Hydropower Project (132 MW)

Lower Barun Khola Hydropower Project is a run-of-river type scheme, located in Sankhuwasabha District of Province 1 in Nepal. The entire component from intake to powerhouse area located in Bhotkhola Rural Municipality within Makalu Barun National Park. The project has an installed capacity of 132 MW. The project is located partly in the rocks of Higher Himalayan and partly in Lesser Himalayan zone with major lithology of gneiss, schist and phyllite.

Jade Consult had carried out geological and geotechnical investigation of the project. Eight boreholes of 265 m depth exploratory core drilling and their associated in situ and laboratory tests was completed for the subsurface investigation of the area. Ampik Energy Pvt. Ltd. is the developer of this project.

Driving distance from Kathmandu to Barun Bazar is about 713 km. Out of which, about 200 km from Kathmandu to Bardibas via B.P Highway and Bardibas to Dharan via Mahendra highway about 193 km is black topped. Dharan to Khandbari is about 212 km. Out of which, Dharan to Hile is blacktopped whereas, Dhankuta to Sabha Khola is seasonal road and again Sabha Khola to Khandbari is blacktopped. The rest 82 km road from Khandbari to Barun Bazar via the Koshi Highway is seasonal.


I was involved in this project during June 2018 – March 2019. I was responsible for site selection; activity planning including airlift of drilling rig and accessories; and supervision of geotechnical investigation of the project that includes 265 m of core drilling in headworks, tunnel alignment, surge tank, powerhouse and underground penstock alignment area; and its associated in situ and laboratory tests.