POWER [December 1, 2015]

Cover Stories

Blackspring Ridge Wind Project, Carmangay, Alberta

With its vast resources of oil, gas, coal, and tar sands—some of the largest in the world—the province of Alberta has long been known as Canada’s fuel tank. Coal- and gas-fired power has supplied the

Blue Lake Expansion Project, Sitka, Alaska

Baranof Island is home to Sitka, Alaska. Located on the outer coast of Alaska’s Inside Passage, it is accessible only by air and sea (although once on the island, standard forms of transportation are

Desert Sunlight Solar Farm, Desert Center, California

Just how fast are things moving in solar? When we received the nomination for the massive Desert Sunlight Solar Farm in late April, the 550-MW facility was the largest solar power plant in the world, sharing

Olkaria Geothermal Expansion Project, Rift Valley Province, Kenya

The Great Rift Valley is a massive continental fault system that runs 6,000 kilometers (km) from Mozambique to Jordan. In Kenya, the East African nation that is neatly halved by the equator, the Rift Valley is

Sihwa Lake Tidal Power Plant, Gyeonggi Province, South Korea

From space, the 12.7-kilometer (km) Sihwa Lake tidal barrage that houses a 400-meter (m)-long tidal power plant looks like a delicate strand stretched across one of many bays and inlets characterizing the

Termosolar Borges, Les Borges Blanques, Spain

You can’t spell C-S-P without S-P-A-I-N. Though there are now many nations with concentrating solar power (CSP) plants in operation, and nations with larger ones than Spain possesses, it’s difficult to


Coal Pulverizer Maintenance Improves Boiler Combustion

Coal pulverizers are the heart of a pulverized coal-fueled boiler. Often, the root causes of nonoptimized combustion lie with the pulverizers. Capacity; reliability; and environmental issues such as slagging

Electric Motor and Transformer Maintenance Best Practices

It is true that electric motors and transformers are some of the most dependable pieces of equipment installed at power plants. They can, in many cases, withstand a high level of mistreatment while continuing

Options for Optimizing Combined Cycle Plants

Gas-fired power is booming—even more than expected. For only the second time ever, but also the second time this year, gas generated more electricity in a month in the U.S. than coal. According to statistics

Seminole Electric Cooperative Sees Big Challenges from Clean Power Plan

Florida’s Seminole Electric Cooperative faces what may be the most difficult generation transition in the nation as a result of the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan. One of the nation’s…

Take These Five Steps Now to Ensure ELG Compliance at Your Power Plant

The first effluent limitation guidelines update since 1982 is game-changing for many U.S. power plants.

The Future of Load Control for Solar PV

Solar power has taken off the training wheels. Once an afterthought, solar photovoltaic (PV) generation has been one of the major sources of new capacity for several years. According to statistics from the

Water-Stressed Regions Provide Proving Grounds for Advanced ZLD Systems

In water-stressed regions outside the U.S., power producers and other industrial water users are incorporating higher levels of water reuse, some to the point of zero liquid discharge (ZLD), due to heightened



2 Billion Underserved Customers Are Waiting for Energy Services

The world has a problem. According to the World Bank, 1.1 billion people lack access to any form of modern energy service, and more than double that number lack access to adequate, reliable, affordable, and

Legal & Regulatory

Goldilocks, Ozone, and Obama's EPA

There’s an old saying in Washington that when everyone is upset, you’ve probably done something right. By that measure, the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) latest update to the National

Focus on O&M

An "Acoustic Mouse" for Handheld 3-D Imaging

Ultrasonic testing (UT) has long been a key method for detecting defects and service-induced degradation in nuclear and fossil plant components and for supporting remaining component life assessment. But it

Optimize Boiler Combustion Using Improved Flue Gas Measurement

The presence of unburned fuel in a power plant’s ash indicates an inefficient combustion process, as some of the energy in the fuel is being wasted. Unburned fuel also poses a risk to safety; if ignited, an

Global Monitor

"Revolutionary" Grid Connection for Offshore Wind Turbines Unveiled

Siemens, the only provider of direct-current (DC) offshore wind connection projects, in October unveiled a potentially game-changing technology that it says enables cheaper and simpler grid connection of wind

Biomass-Fed Organic Rankine Cycle Units Make It Big

One of the world’s largest biomass-fed organic rankine cycle (ORC) plants is getting ready to begin operations. Italian firm Turboden is preparing to put online an 8-MW power unit in Athens, Maine, that will

Ethiopia Begins Generating Power from 1.87-GW Gibe III Hydro Plant

Ethiopia’s generation capacity got an immense boost as operations began at the 1.87-GW Gibe III hydroelectric power plant in the middle reach of the Omo River basin this October. The plant—Ethiopia’s

Germany: Utilities Must Shoulder Nuclear Phase-Out Costs

Germany’s nuclear power–producing companies will be able to shoulder the costs of the nuclear phase-out—including costs for decommissioning and the disposal of radioactive waste. That’s according to

POWER Digest (December 2015)

GE Completes Alstom Acquisition. GE announced on Nov. 2 that a $10.6 billion deal to acquire Alstom ’s power and grid business is complete. Alstom will now entirely refocus its activities on rail transport

THE BIG PICTURE: Nuclear Spins

Editors note: Corrected (Dec. 7). A previous version of this infographic listed Russia's nuclear total as 1.9 GW. It is 2.9 GW.

The Potentials and Pitfalls of Battery Storage

Battery storage firms and energy storage experts at the Energy Storage North America (ESNA) conference in San Diego Oct. 13–15 were effusive in their praise of battery storage’s potential while

Speaking of Power

Engaging Youth in Power

The challenge of getting a new generation of workers interested in the power sector is one I hear about frequently. Too many young adults are more fascinated by the tech sector, plant folks say. That may be

GBR Reports