Author Archives: Sonal Patel

Financially Flailing Eskom Scrambles to Complete Defect-Ridden Coal Plants

South Africa’s state-owned utility Eskom was forced to slash 2,000 MW on a rotational basis nationwide on Oct. 16 and Oct. 17. The newest round of power cuts—the first in nearly seven months—highlight the state-owned utility’s scramble to avert financial disaster stemming in part from the fast-tracked construction of two 4.8-GW coal-fired power plants: Medupi […]

Moody’s: Carbon Concerns Denting Merchant Coal Refinancing Prospects

Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) risks are diminishing the number of potential investors in U.S. merchant coal projects, and that is putting more pressure on already squeezed coal plant economics, Moody’s Investors Service said in a new sector report.   The U.S. merchant coal plants, which are already grappling with persistently low power prices that […]

Tiny Underwater Robot Has Big Impact at Endesa’s Thermal Power Plants

Spain’s largest electric utility Endesa has successfully tested a new remotely operated vehicle (ROV) that it says will make inspection and maintenance in fully or partially submerged environments at its thermal power plants less costly and more efficient. The underwater robot, which was custom manufactured by Spanish startup NIDO Robotics for Endesa’s applications, is about […]

Uptake of GE’s Biggest Wind Turbines Gain Traction

GE Renewable Energy has made major gains in orders for its 5.3-MW Cypress onshore wind turbine and the 12-MW Haliade-X offshore wind turbine. Prototypes of both are still being tested in the Netherlands. Key Contracts for Innovative 5-MW Onshore Machine  The GE business division introduced the first turbine in the Cypress platform, a 4.8-MW machine, […]

Four Projects Picked to Speed Up Pumped Storage Hydro Construction 

Four projects have won a competition launched by the Department of Energy (DOE) in April 2019 to help shorten the commissioning time for pumped storage hydropower projects and revitalize the hydropower industry.  The grand prize winners or the Furthering Advancements to Shorten Time (FAST) Prize competition were selected by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) […]

NETL: Coal Chemical Looping Combustion Closer to Commercialization

Chemical looping combustion (CLC), an advanced coal power technology that could markedly simplify carbon capture at power plants, has moved significantly closer to commercialization, owing to a breakthrough in oxygen carrier durability, the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) said.    The national laboratory, which is part of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), revealed on […]

GE Unveils New H-Class Gas Turbine—and Already Has a First Order

GE on Oct. 1 unveiled the 7HA.03, the newest model in its 2014-launched high efficiency air-cooled (HA) gas turbine line. On Oct. 2, it also announced that Florida Power and Light’s (FPL’s) Dania Beach Clean Energy Center will be the first to showcase two of the “world’s largest, most efficient, and flexible gas turbines” for the 60-Hz […]

India Starts Up Its First-Ever USC Coal Unit

NTPC Ltd., one of India’s largest power generating companies, on Sept. 3 announced it had commissioned the country’s first ultrasupercritical (USC) coal-fired unit at the two-unit 1,320-MW Khargone plant that is under construction in the state of Madhya Pradesh. The development marks a major milestone for India, which depends on coal for 56% of its […]

Westinghouse Will Acquire Rolls-Royce’s Civil Nuclear Business 

Westinghouse Electric Co. will acquire Rolls-Royce’s Civil Nuclear Systems and Services businesses in North America for an undisclosed amount under a “definitive agreement” announced on Sept. 26.  The transaction, which is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals, will see Westinghouse absorb Rolls-Royce’s civil nuclear service businesses in the U.S. and Canada, along with […]

Wind turbine

ENGIE, Microsoft Seal Innovative ‘Firm Power’ PPA for 230 MW Wind and Solar in Texas

ENGIE, the world’s largest independent power producer, has signed an innovative volume firming agreement (VFA) with Microsoft that will allow the technology giant to buy “firm” power from wind and solar projects in Texas under a specially structured power purchase agreement (PPA).  The companies on Sept. 24 said the long-term PPA will allow Microsoft to […]