Siemens has announced it has begun work on the turnkey erection of the Knapsack II gas turbine combined-cycle (GTCC) power plant at Hurth near Cologne, Germany.

Siemens and the Norwegian power supplier Statkraft concluded the contract to build the plant back in September 2010, but the project was conditional on obtaining planning permission.

Regional authorities in Cologne have now granted the final building permission and operating license. The power plant is scheduled to commence operation in 2013.

Knapsack II is being built in Hürth’s chemical industry park and will have an installed generating capacity of about 430 MW.

Siemens will deliver a SGT5-4000F gas turbine, a SST5-5000 steam turbine, and an SGen5-2000H electrical generator, as well as the complete electrical equipment and SPPA-T3000 instrumentation and control system.

The main components are arranged in a single-shaft configuration which, according to Siemens, plays an important role in the flexibility of electricity generating plants of this type.

“Construction of this plant is very significant in view of the energy reforms in Germany. Thanks to its high degree of flexibility and low [carbon dioxide] and nitrous oxide emissions, this power plant can compensate for sudden outages due to fluctuations in wind and solar power both quickly and in an environmentally friendly manner,” said Lothar Balling, head of Gas Turbine Power Plant Solutions at Siemens.

“Our expectation is that in the future, the market will reward providers that offer flexible capacities, and will not discriminate against investments already made at this stage,” adds Jürgen Tzschoppe, CEO of Statkraft Markets GmbH.

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