The Latin America Power conference and exhibition being held in Rio was the venue for Siemens Westinghouse Power Corporation (SWPC) to announce yesterday that it had been awarded the $200m equipment contract for the 800 MW Norte Fluminense thermal power plant.

The plant, which will be Brazil’s largest gas-fired combined cycle installation, will be located in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, near the port city of Macae. SWPC will provide three model W501F advanced gas turbines, three heat recovery steam generators and one steam turbine.

Initial operation is scheduled for late in 2003. Light, an electric utility serving Rio de Janeiro, with 90 per cent of the shares and Petrobras with ten per cent, will jointly own the plant.

The Norte Fluminense project will be the fifth major thermal power project with generating equipment supplied by SWPC in Brazil, representing a total of nearly 3000 MW of new capacity – enough to power more than three million homes and businesses in the region.

“We’re extremely proud to play a significant role in alleviating the energy crisis in Brazil. We’ve had a presence in that region for decades, and we look forward to continuing our long-term commitment of providing power generation solutions in Brazil and all of Latin America,” said Randy Zwirn, SWPC president and chief executive officer and member of the Siemens Power Generation Group Board.

There are more than 60 advanced W501F-class units currently in operation in the world and another 300 under commitment from customers. The Siemens advanced gas turbine fleet has achieved over one million hours of operating experience. Two SWPC-supplied W501F units are installed at the Uruguaiana power station owned by AES do Brazil. Achieving commercial operation in 2000, this was the first combined cycle power plant (comprised of both gas and steam turbine generators) to go into operation in Brazil.

Siemens Westinghouse Power Corporation (SWPC), headquartered in Orlando, Florida, USA, is the regional business entity in the Americas for Siemens Power Generation’s global fossil power generation business, which has an installed fleet of nearly 550 000 MW worldwide.