Iberdrola Renovables Starts Up National Wind Turbine Control Center. Iberdrola Renovables, a company that owns 41 operating wind farms (3,900 MW in nameplate capacity) in the U.S., on Sept. 26 began operating its National Control Center (NCC), a facility based in Portland, Ore., that has operational control over some 800,000 inputs from 2,500 wind turbines across the nation. Based on the company’s CORE control center in Toledo, Ohio, NCC monitors and controls all the company’s wind farms and substations in the U.S. all year round and in real time. Essentially, the center obtains information from control and data systems at wind farms as well as the main operating variables from substations. Analysts then diagnose problems, including breakdowns. The company said the facility would help optimize operational management and cost efficiency at its wind farms in the U.S.
B&W to Provide Steam Generators for TVA’s Bellefonte Reactor. Babcock & Wilcox Co. (B&W) subsidiary Babcock & Wilcox Canada Ltd. won a contract from the U.S. government–owned Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) to design and manufacture two steam generators for the Bellefonte Unit 1 nuclear reactor, as part of a plan to complete that project. The steam generators are scheduled to be delivered to the Bellefonte site in 2015, pending a decision by the TVA board to complete construction of the unit, the Ontario-based company said on Oct. 14. B&W supplied the original 1,210-MW reactors to the plant when construction began in 1974, before being halted in 1988 when the plant was 90% complete. Unit 1 is now considered about 55% complete due to the transfer or sale of many components and the need to replace others.
Cavico Completes Construction of 180-MW Vietnamese Hydro Unit. Vietnamese infrastructure development company Cavico Corp. on Oct. 14 said its subsidiary Cavico Hydropower had completed all construction activities at the 180-MW Dong Nai 3 Hydropower Plant, adding that it had started the handover process to project owner Electricity of Vietnam. Cavico began building the plant, located on the Dong Nair River in Dac Nong province, in 2007. Work comprised excavation and construction of a 655-meter-long (and 8-meter-wide) headrace tunnel and a 73-meter-long incline tunnel. The plant has a twin unit, Dong Nai 4.
SSE Gets Green Light to Build 60-MW Pumped Storage Facility. Scottish and Southern’s generation business, SSE Generation, garnered the Scottish government’s consent to develop a 60-MW pumped storage plant at its existing Sloy hydroelectric power station in Loch Lomond, Scotland. Sloy, commissioned in 1950, is the largest conventional hydroelectric plant in the UK, and plans for pumped storage at that site had been proposed as long ago as the 1930s. The new pumping station will enable water to be pumped from Loch Lomond to Loch Sloy during times of low demand. Construction of the plant will likely start in 2012 and is expected to last two years. The Perth-based company also said in October that it plans to restart production at its recently opened Glendoe hydroelectric plant in the first half of 2012, following shutdown in August 2009 due to rock falls. Construction of new tunnels at the plant is currently under way.
Siemens Hands Over 800-MW Cogeneration Units to PowerSeraya. Siemens Energy handed over Units 30 and 40 of PowerSeraya’s combined-cycle power cogeneration plant on Oct. 20. Siemens and consortium partners Siemens Pte. Ltd. Singapore and Samsung C&T Korea built the turnkey 800-MW plant to replace three oil-fired power plants on Jurong Island, in southwest Singapore. Siemens and Samsung had previously built two 370-MW combined-cycle units for PowerSeraya at the same site. Those units were also converted to cogeneration in the course of the new construction project. Completion of the new units means that PowerSeraya now has four combined-cycle units on Jurong Island with a total installed capacity of 1,540 MW.
Ontario Shelves 900-MW Natural Gas Plant. TransCanada Corp. on Oct. 7 said it would work with Ontario’s provincial government to terminate a contract to build the Oakville Generating Station, a C$1.2 billion natural gas–fired power plant planned for construction near Toronto. The announcement followed the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure’s decision to suspend development work on the plant, including review of a key environmental report. Without mentioning that the plant had met with considerable public opposition from Oakville residents, the ministry said that power demand and supply changes made it clear that the proposed plant was no longer needed. “A transmission solution can ensure that the growing region will have enough electricity to meet future needs,” the ministry said. TransCanada had signed a 20-year power supply contract with the Ontario Power Authority to build the 900-MW plant in 2009 to replace the province’s coal-fired plants.
Alstom to Supply FGD System for 4,800-MW South African Coal Plant. Alstom in mid-October won a €160 million contract to build South Africa’s first wet flue gas desulfurization (FGD) system at Eskom’s 4,800-MW Kusile power plant, which is under construction in the coal-rich Mpumalanga province. Alstom will engineer, supply, and install six wet limestone FGD plants for the six new 800-MW coal-fired boilers at the plant, systems that are expected to remove more than 90% of the sulfur oxide generated in the boilers.
DOE Awards Dresser Waukesha $6.6M to Develop Industrial-Sized CHP System. The U.S. Department of Energy on Oct. 19 awarded $6.6 million to natural gas engine manufacturer Dresser Waukesha to develop an “ultra-clean” combined heat and power (CHP) engine generator system. Wisconsin-based Dresser Waukesha plans to invest an additional $5 million to develop the CHP system, which it anticipates will have a capacity of 1 to 1.5 MWe and 1.5 MWt. The project will include a field test that will demonstrate the technical and commercial viability of the engine generator systems. The Energy Department noted that CHP has made major inroads in large applications of 50 MW and larger, but, owing to a lack of cost-competitive options, smaller industrial applications of between 5 kW and 50 MW have not been fully developed.
—Sonal Patel is POWER’s senior writer.