A new 745-MW natural gas-fired power plant in Poland will feature General Electric’s (GE’s) 9HA.02 gas turbine, a model the company said “has the quickest ramp rate in the industry” at 88 MW per minute, and with a DLN 2.6e combustion system “capable of burning up to 50% by volume of hydrogen when blended with natural gas.”
GE on July 6 confirmed it has an order from Polish power supplier Energa SA, part of ORLEN Group, for the Ostroleka C combined cycle power plant project in northeast Poland. The project marks GE’s second H-Class gas turbine order in Poland after Dolna Odra, a 1.4-GW plant currently under construction that will be equipped with two GE 9HA.01 gas turbines.
Both the Ostroleka C and Dolna Odra projects are expected to provide power generation to help Poland as the country continues to phase out its coal-fired power plants. Ostroleka C is expected to come online in 2025, with Dolna Odra expected to be commissioned next year.
Gas Plant at Site of Canceled Coal Project
Ostroleka C originally was conceived as a 1,000-MW coal-fired power plant project, also led by GE. Ground was broken for that project in 2018, but financial and other problems led to the coal plant being canceled in 2020. ORLEN, a Polish oil refiner, took over Energa that year, and said it would only complete the power plant project if the new generation facility was powered by natural gas.
“Our investment in Ostroleka will play a vital role in supporting the national electricity system and the security of future energy supply,” said Daniel Obajtek, CEO of PKN ORLEN and acting CEO of Energa SA, on Wednesday. “In this decade we expect growth in electricity demand and phase-out of the oldest coal-fired power plants. Therefore, ORLEN Group invests in stable power plants with ability to supplement renewable energy sources.”
Obajtek added, “Ostroleka C power plant will also play a strategic role in supporting Poland’s and Orlen’s decarbonization efforts. ORLEN Group strategy incorporates a commitment to the group’s long-term objective of achieving a net-zero carbon footprint by 2050. The group’s 2030 CO2 reduction targets in power generation is 33%/MWh till 2030.”
Additional GE-Supplied Equipment
The new plant in Ostroleka, in addition to the 9HA.02 gas turbine, also will feature an STF-D650 steam turbine, a W88 generator, a heat recovery steam generator, or HRSG, and GE’s integrated Mark* VIe Distributed Control System. Energa on Wednesday said the 88-MW per minute ramp rate of the gas turbine will enable power to be dispatched quickly in response to grid fluctuations. GE said it will serve as the engineering, procurement, and construction lead for the power plant project.
“With a unit that is extremely responsive and able to help ensure the reliability of the energy system, we will be able to support Energa from ORLEN Group, making an important contribution towards the growth of renewables in Poland’s energy mix,” said Amit Kulkarni, Head of Product Management for Heavy Duty Gas Turbines, GE Gas Power. “Once in operation and supplied with gas from the Poland-Lithuania Interconnector, Ostroleka will contribute to increasing the security of power supply in the country. Our advanced H-Class combined cycle plant technology will be key in the development of this strategic project, that can also have a significant spillover effect to the local economy, with large parts of the power generation equipment manufactured in the country.”
The steam turbine for Ostroleka C will be manufactured in GE’s steam turbine factory in Elblag, Poland. The generator will be built in GE’s generator factory in Wroclaw, Poland. The gas turbine will be manufactured at GE’s Manufacturing Excellence Center in Belfort, France.
GE said the turbine and combustion system are designed to eventually enable the burning of 100% hydrogen in the platform over the next decade.
“GE sees hydrogen-blended natural gas accelerating the world’s efforts towards decarbonizing the power generation sector,” said Kulkarni. “Our H-Class technology can deliver highly efficient power generation that is ready, even today, to emit lower carbon when blended with hydrogen. This will help the implementation of Orlen Group’s announced commitment to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.”
—Darrell Proctor is a senior associate editor for POWER (@POWERmagazine).