POWER digest (November 2008)

News items of interest to power industry professionals.

Mitsubishi to supply gas turbines to Endesa. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. (MHI) said in September it had received a full turnkey order for two sets of liquefied natural gas – fired gas turbine combined- cycle (GTCC) power generation systems from Endesa Generacion S.A., an electricity generation company in Spain. The new systems, with a total rating of about 800 MW, are slated to go on-line in 2011.

GDF SUEZ to start construction of Panama hydro project. On Sept. 29, a GDF SUEZ subsidiary said it will begin building a 115-MW run-of-river hydro project in Panama. The company said that it had already sold 100 MW for a period of 10 years (starting in 2013) to distribution companies at an energy auction that took place earlier that month. GDF SUEZ expects to provide 6,000 GWh over those years.

The hydro power plant will consist of three units to be built in sequence down the Chiriqui River. Because it potentially increases the group’s local electricity offering, it could also lead to more stable energy prices and reduce the nation’s dependency on fluctuating fuel prices.

GDF SUEZ Energy International entered the Panama energy market by acquiring a 51% stake in the country’s largest thermal generating complex, the 280-MW Bahia Las Minas, in March 2007. At the end of last year, GDF SUEZ started construction of the 87-MW Cativá installation to provide emergency electricity supply.

Wärtsilä to set up 200-MW combined-cycle plant in Pakistan. Power plant provider Wärtsilä said in September that it received an engineering, procurement, and construction order worth $179 million from Nishat Chunian Power Ltd., an independent power producer in Pakistan.

The combined-cycle plant will have a total gross electrical power output of 200 MW. This order follows one signed by Wärtsilä earlier this year. Both projects, along with other Wärtsilä power plants under construction or in operation in Pakistan, will produce a total generating capacity of more than 1,500 MW.

Due to be commissioned in March 2010, the Nishat Chunian combined-cycle plant will be located on the same site as the Nishat power plant in Jambar Kalan, Kasur District, near Lahore. It will comprise 11 Wärtsilä 18V46 generating sets, with exhaust-recovery boilers supplying steam to a single steam turbine. Wärtsilä estimates that the plant will have an overall lifetime efficiency of 45% when running on heavy fuel oil at site conditions. This level of efficiency on low-cost fuel oil will make generating costs very competitive.

Voith Turbo to provide planetary gears for South African mega-power plant. Germany’s Voith Turbo announced in Sept. that it had received an order earlier this year for 18 Vorecon variable-speed planetary gears from Sulzer Pumps South Africa. The Vorecon gears, rated at 19.7 MW each, will be installed at a new coal-fired power plant planned by South African government utility Eskom (see story p. TK) to optimize pump operating efficiency. The 4,740-MW Medupi power station will comprise six units, each rated at 790 MW.

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