alt   The CapWa project, which offers great potential for coal-fired power plants, is at a stage where it can be tested for entry to the market on a commercial basis.

Ludwin Daal, project manager and consultant with Netherlands-based global energy consultancy DNV Kema, told PEi that the partners behind CapWa – which stands for Capture of Evaporated Water – are excited about building on the work done so far.

“We are looking forward to working with an international system integrator willing to invest in this technology and bring it to market.”

The project aims to realize the production of membrane modules which are capable of selectively removing evaporated water from industrial applications.

The water capture technology has implications for energy savings for coal-fired power plants, and also has particular resonance for such facilities where there are plentiful coal supplies but not enough water, as in China.

There is also great advantage to the technology for fossil-fuel power plants where there is water scarcity in general, a point that will become more relevant as greater pressure grows on the world’s water resources in the decades to come, due in large part to increased urbanization.

“The data we measured reaffirmed what we find in the lab,” said Daal. “It has been demonstrated in practice at similar levels and it shows some conflicts in the work we have done, but also it shows us more than enough to have the confidence to continue to the next stage.

“That stage is to bring it to proven status as a technology, which means we need to conduct two to three commercial demonstrations on site, and we are looking for system integrators to help achieve that.”

The technology is versatile and is not aimed uniquely at the power sector. One of the biggest beneficiaries is likely to be the global paper and board manufacturing sector.

“The energy savings are the main factor. The chairman of the European Paper Industry said that, based on conservative energy savings we have made for the paper sector, we can use the technology to mean €1 billion a year in energy savings alone. You see a clear driver here. It’s also a new source of water, which makes it interesting for particular world regions.”

While the technology pays for itself within two years for the paper trade, Daal says it would take longer for the coal power sector, anywhere from three to 12 years, but there are other compelling reasons to get in on the action early.

“For the coal powered sector it is not compelling enough, at least at the present time, but is at least compelling enough to warrant a further demonstration.

“There are places in the world where water is so scarce that there are policies in place to address the dilemma of water and energy and we are talking with a partner in South Africa to see if this will be a solution for them.”

“It is also a particular issue in China –there are major water shortages and the percentage of coal fired power plants in really water-stressed areas is I believe as high as 30 per cent.

“It’s been confirmed by at least one coal power plant operator that because of the conditions the plant is only operating two months a year because of water shortage.”

The13-strong international consortium that is behind CapWa is now tasked with realising the next step, something Daal acknowledges is difficult to accomplish in recession-hit Europe at the present time.

Pilot schemes such as in the Water Research Center in Georgia, US are giving the project serious consideration, but ultimately what Daal and colleagues are seeking is an entity large enough to fully realise a technology that has been fifteen years in development.

“For this next stage you need to do this with a large enterprise, one that can storm the market afterwards. It has to be capable of implementing a technology at this stage, so as to convince a partner like Membrana to manufacture the membranes.

“Also, in terms of the power industry, we need to ensure the partner we team up with is going to be there for a while and has the capability to supply the sales and after sales that are necessary for potential to be realised.”

E.ON opens wind farm off Swedish island

E.ON has officially opened the €120m ($162m) Karehamn offshore wind farm near the Swedish island of Oland in the Baltic Sea.

The wind farm was connected to the grid a few weeks ago following 19 months of construction.

Karehamn has a capacity of 48 MW and operates 16 Vestas V112 turbines, each with a capacity of 3 MW.

The wind farm was built using the MPI Discovery, an ultra-modern installation vessel which E.ON had commissioned especially for its offshore wind farms and has exclusively chartered for the next six years.

It has six jack-up legs which lift the whole 140-metre long and 40-metre wide vessel out of the water to provide a stable platform from which foundations and wind turbines can be efficiently and safely installed even in rough seas.

alt   The wind farm was officially opened in the presence of Swedish energy minister Anna-Karin Hatt (pictured left). It will supply over 50,000 Swedish homes with electricity.

Areva delivers reactor vessel to Flamanville nuclear plant


Areva has delivered the reactor vessel to EDF’s new nuclear plant at Flamanville in France.

It is hoped that the delivery will add impetus to work at the plant, which has been dogged by delays and is now due to go online in 2016, four years later than first planned.

Areva said in a statement that the delivery “marks the ramp-up of operations in the nuclear island and acceleration of electromechanical installation work at the site”.

The vessel will be installed inside the reactor building over the coming months. The dome installation was carried out in July and Areva says the civil engineering work for the EPR site is now 95 per cent complete.

The reactor vessel was built in Areva’s Saint Marcel facility and was then transported by sea to the port of Diélette on the northwest coast of France before being transferred to the nuclear power plant site.

Claude Jaouen, senior executive vice president of AREVA Reactors & Services, said: “The arrival of the vessel at Flamanville represents a key step forward for this project.”

SSE on track with €331m CCGT plant in Ireland

British utility SSE has said it is on track with construction of a €331m combined cycle gas turbine power plant in Ireland.

Building of the power station marks the biggest infrastructure project currently being built in the country.

The Great Island power plant in County Wexford is set to go operational late next year and will be able to power the equivalent of half a million homes.

As part of the project, SSE is spending €43m on delivering a 41 km industrial-grade gas pipeline from Bawnlusk, County Kilkenny, through Gaslink and Bord Gais Networks into the heart of southeast Ireland, which currently has no access to such strategic gas infrastructure.

SSE – which is the third largest generation capacity owner in Ireland, with 1568 MW in operation including 500 MW of wind farm capacity – says that “while this gas pipeline will be used to fuel the CCGT power station, it has been purposely over-sized to accommodate regional development in the future”.

Peter Gavican, SSE’s project manager for Great Island, said the plant “will be a critical component to attracting future inward investment into the region”.

“For the first time businesses and large industrials in south Wexford will have access to an industrial-grade natural gas network,” he said.

“This will help accommodate further regional development and provide access by businesses and larger manufacturing industrials to a cleaner, more convenient and more economic fuel source.

“Most importantly it will significantly improve the attractiveness of the region for inward investment by larger manufacturers and multinationals.”

Tekmar completes Meerwind cable project

Tekmar Meerwind cable project

Cable protection company Tekmar Energy has successfully completed work on an 80-turbine wind farm in the German North Sea.

The company has supplied bespoke coverings for the inter-array cables designed by JDR for the 288 MW Meerwind project, which is operated by WindMW. Construction work on the wind farm started in 2012 and is expected to be completed by end 2013.

Tekmar’s job is to protect the inter-array cables from exposure to loads, deformations and fatigue during installation and across the wind farm’s service life.

The company’s chief executive James Ritchie said: “Being awarded the contract for such high-profile international work has represented a great achievement for us. Our Teklink protection system will support this important project throughout its working life and enable it to benefit the region for many years to come.”

Tekmar worked with international submarine power cables installation contractor VSMC. Up to four cables – including eight of Tekmar’s cable protection systems – were installed per day.

Over the past five years Tekmar, headquartered in northeast England, has installed more than 2000 cable protection systems and has a further 1000 in design or manufacture for 26 wind farms across Europe.

Tekmar’s Teklink cable protection system does not require a j-tube and utilises a remote installation method. This, says the company, provides enhanced cable life and resilience – reducing the risk of damage and requirement for maintenance.

Berger/Cummins delivers fast-track 30 MW power plant to US base in Afghanistan


A 30 MW power plant has been mobilized in just 55 days at a US Army airfield in Afghanistan.

Located 25 miles north of Kabul, Bagram Airfield is one of the largest military bases in Afghanistan, equivalent to a town of 40 000. It supports US and international military personnel, civilian employees and contractors.

Its two runways support commercial, cargo and military flights ranging from Predator drones and fighter jets to 747s.

The airfield is powered by an existing government-owned gas turbine plant but this suffered frequent power shortages. To fix this the US Army Corps of Engineers hired Berger/Cummins, a joint venture between The Louis Berger Group and Cummins Power Generation, to supply a supplementary leased plant.

Berger/Cummins repositioned power generation and supporting electrical equipment from three different sites within Afghanistan while airlifting other essential material from Dubai directly into Bagram.

The installation team worked around the clock to finish the electrical installation to meet the September 26 deadline. Berger/Cummins will operate and maintain the power plant for up to 18 months.

Meggitt Sensing offers shock therapy

Meggitt Sensing Systems has launched the Endevco model 727, an extremely lightweight piezoresistive accelerometer designed for accurate shock measurement.

Available in four ranges (2,000 g, 6,000 g, 20,000 g and 60,000 g), the model 727 can measure shocks in g ranges well above current drop test sensors, according to Meggitt.

The Endevco model 727 has been tested and rated to survive shocks up to 1.5 times its range. At only 0.3 g for the accelerometer body and 3.6 g per metre for the integral 3-metre cable, mass loading to the test object is minimal and its 0.7-cm diameter, anodized aluminum package is designed for adhesive mounting.

The Endevco model 42894 removal tool is included with each unit. Recommended signal conditioning for use with the model 727 includes the model 126 three-channel DC bridge amplifier, the model 136 three-channel signal conditioner and the model 436 DC differential voltage amplifier.

Alstom wins turbine deal for biomass plant

Alstom is to design and supply an 18 MW geared reaction steam turbine for a biomass plant being built in Northern Ireland.

The wood-fuelled biomass plant will be built in Lisahally by Danish power plant specialist Burmeister & Wain Scandinavian Contractor and is expected to become operational in 2015. It is part-funded by the UK government’s Green Investment Bank and Danish EKF (Export Credit Agency).

Alstom will design and make the turbine at its factories in the UK, Hungary and Poland.

Alstom said the GRT turbine is pre-assembled in the factory before shipment and requires a simple foundation to which it is easy to anchor the steam turbine generator package, “saving money on installation and commissioning times”.

Sulzer launches new version of AHLSTAR process pump

Sulzer AHLSTAR process pump

Sulzer Pumps has launched a new version of its AHLSTAR end suction single stage close coupled process pump series which it claims will boost reliability and performance and offer low life cycle costs and a lighter environmental footprint. The new pump series was developed for demanding pumping applications in a variety of industries including oil and gas, hydrocarbon processing, power generation and wastewater.

AHLSTAR’s close coupled process pumps are designed to pump a wide range of liquids, including clean and slightly contaminated liquids, viscous liquids, fibrous slurries, non-fibrous slurries and liquids containing large solids. Even liquids with high gas content of up to 70 per cent can be handled.

The pump is equipped with a selection of Sulzer EnerSave impellers according to types of pumped liquid and applications. Designed with a patented Rotokey impeller mounting and an externally adjustable side plate fixing, it enables easy and quick assembly and dismantling. Patented balancing holes in the impeller guarantee the right flow and pressure condition in the whole shaft seal area.

Sulzer WaterLess shaft seal options with dynamic seals provide easy assembly and maintenance while reducing lifecycle cost.

Winergy’s HybridDrive installed in turbine

German wind turbine drive train component manufacturer Winergy has seen its 3 MW HybridDrive installed in a W2E wind turbine in Kankel near Rostock.

The installation follows prototype testing of the HybridDrive and successful certification of the components.

The HybridDrive combines a two-stage planetary gearbox and a permanent magnet generator into an integrated drive train. This, says the company, results in a length reduction of 35-50 per cent for the complete drive train.

The current 3 MW version of the HybridDrive has a nominal torque of 2550 kNm with a weight of 34t, including oil supply system. Therefore, says Winergy, the HybridDrive is “considerably lighter in comparison to other drive train concepts in the 3 MW class”.

FG Wilson launches a new genset range

FG Wilson

FG Wilson has unveiled a new range of generator sets. The company said the 24-110 kVA range of gensets has been redesigned to provide “a more competitive offering that includes an enhanced choice of key options, while continuing to deliver a reliable and fuel-efficient performance”.

FG Wilson said that “a stand-out feature of the new range is the introduction of the CAL enclosure, a new more competitive option which offers a high quality enclosure with excellent sound attenuation and protection for a diverse range of applications”.

Launching the new product range, Tony McAllister, FG Wilson general manager, said, “The enhanced choice of options available with the 24-110 kVA range ensure its suitability for a diverse range of applications and environments.”

The range is available in non-emissions, optimised (EU stage II) and EU stage IIIa emissions compliant varieties.

The launch follows a recent announcement by Caterpillar of strategic plans to position FG Wilson as “the volume brand” within its electrical power division for all diesel and gas generator sets from 5.5-750 kVA.

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