On-site power for Mexico's AHMSA
On-site power for Mexico's AHMSA

In a move aimed at reducing its operating costs, Mexico’s largest steelmaker, Altos Hornos de Mexico (AHMSA), is investing in four on-site power plants.  

The plants are located in the city of Monclova in the northern state of Coahuila, and construction work has already begun. When completed, the plants are planned to supply two steel mills which produce 35 million metric tonnes of liquid steel per year and use around 400 MW of power.

To fuel the plants, AHMSA has ordered 40 gas-fired Cat gensets with a combined capacity of 160 MW from Madisa, a Caterpillar dealer in Mexico.

‘We face many challenges in the steelmaking industry, and one of the greatest is energy consumption and its cost,’ said Emigdio Valades, a power plant area superintendent at AHMSA. ‘With the power derived from these Cat units, we are producing energy that is 55% cheaper than the power supplied by the Federal Commission [Mexico’s state-owned utility, the Comision Federal de Electricidad].’

Madisa said it had supplied the transformers, control system, air compressors, fans, cabling and commissioning for the four plants. In addition, Madisa will provide ongoing maintenance.