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Xacbal is an hydroelectric project established in the riverbed of the river with the same name, it is located north of the Sierra de los Cuchumatanes, Northeast of the Guatemalan Republic, in San Gaspar Chajul, El Quiché.
The contractor that developed the tunnel was the one that originally required a underground communications system combined with coverage on the surface. An improved version of this system would be useful to the project’s administration to manage the operation.
The tunnel’s development lasted 4 years. During this period, several workgroups like Drilling, electricians, mechanics, management, warehouse and security were able to communicate efficiently and to finish the tunnel´s development. In 2011, the hydroelectric was ready to start operating.
A modification to the communications system was necessary because the administration did not require communication inside the tunnel but at the Machine Rooms, which are around 5 storeys deep. In addition, this improvement allowed us to add coverage from Nebaj’s Head Municipality, located approximately 50 kms away from the project and also allowed us to link the management headquarters, located on Guatemala City.
Coverage between Nebaj and the project was fundamental for the safekeeping of the electrical transmission towers due to a sabotage crisis and vandalism. Radio communications, combined with the necessary coverage allowed them to respond efficiently to threats and keep the electrical transmission towers safe.
The region’s climate and topography made this project particularly challenging since the difficult to transit roads and the hikes in the mountains represented obstacles that we happily overcame.