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Emerson upgrades Iberdrola CHP plant

US-based Emerson Process Management has upgraded the control systems at Iberdrola’s EnergyWorks Cartagena combined heat and power plant in Spain with the latest version of its Ovation expert control system.

The gas-fired plant is on the south eastern coast and the 95 MW, combined-cycle cogeneration facility supplies process steam and power to a neighboring polycarbonate factory.

The existing control systems needed to be upgraded to improve plant responsiveness, extend the life of the plant and maximise production efficiencies.

Plant manager Carlos Gonzàƒ¡lez Costea said: “We needed to use this opportunity to upgrade our systems to enable the plant to continue to provide efficient production. However, this had to be balanced against our obligation to maintain the supply of steam to our customer.”

Emerson supplied four pairs of redundant Ovation controllers, installed the operating software and implemented the changeover during a 10-day planned shutdown of the plant.

The upgrade was scheduled in two phases to minimise revenue lost due to the power station being off-line and ensure a continuous supply of steam to the plastics factory.

Since the project was completed, Emerson says reliability and efficiency has improved and faster system response has enabled the plant to react more quickly to changes in demand.

The control systems are in two sections, one covering the CHP plant and the other covering the separate package boilers. While the CHP plant was modernised, the package boilers generated the steam required by the plastics factory.

Steam generation then reverted to the CHP plant during the upgrade of the package boilers.

This allowed Emerson to ensure the steam supply was uninterrupted and local operation of auxiliary services was maintained.

“This was a particularly challenging migration project with a very tight timeframe,” said Bob Yeager, president of Emerson Process Management’s Power & Water Solutions.

Areva to provide fuel assemblies to nuclear plant in Switzerland

Gosgen: Areva will deliver 180 fuel assemblies
Gosgen: Areva will deliver 180 fuel assemblies

French nuclear company Areva has been awarded a contract for the fabrication of fuel assemblies for five reloads at Gosgen nuclear power plant in Switzerland.

The company will deliver 180 fuel assemblies to the plants owners, Swiss utility Gosgen-Daniken, starting in 2018.

Areva was involved in the building of the 1020 MW plant – which produces district heating as well as power – and has been fabricating its fuel elements since it was commissioned in 1979.

The company is currently retrofitting the reactor’s instrumentation and control technology.

Gosgen is one of five reactors operating in Switerland. In 2011 following the Fukushima disaster in Japan, the Swiss government

Metso wins deal for world’s biggest gas-to-liquids plant

Metso has won a deal for the largest gas-to-liquids plant in the world.

Qatar Shell has awarded a service contract to Metso supporting an earlier delivery of valves and intelligent positioners to the Pearl gas to liquids (GTL) project in Ras Laffan Industrial City.

Jointly developed by Qatar Petroleum and Shell, Pearl GTL is the biggest such plant in the world and the largest energy project in Qatar.

As part of the capital project, Metso delivered more than 2500 valves and 1200 ND9000 positioners. As the plant is designed to run 24 hours, Shell took advantage of streamlining the spare part procurement process to ensure competitive pricing and speedy order delivery. The five-year spare parts agreement with Metso covers more than 1000 items.

Sami Alatalo, Metso service manager in Doha, said the agreement “provides Shell and their service contractor with a firm basis to plan valve service actions with delivery times and agreed prices”.

Mitsubishi Heavy clinches India and China contracts and completes SCR testing in US

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has won an order to supply core components for two sets of a 660 MW supercritical coal-fired boiler and steam turbine to be installed at an Indian power plant.

The components will be fitted in two new high-efficiency coal fired units at Chhabra power station, approximately 300 kilometers south-southwest from Jaipur.

The plant is owned by RRVUNL and the new units are due to be operational in 2016.

The boilers and turbine generators will be built and supplied by L&T-MHI Boilers and L&T-MHI Turbine Generators, two joint ventures set up by MHI in conjunction with Larsen & Toubro, India’s largest construction company and heavy machinery manufacturer.

MHI will manufacture the core components of the boilers and turbines while Mitsubishi Electric Corp will supply the core generator components.

RRVUNL was formed in 2000 when the Rajasthan government unbundled its state electricity board into five companies, including RRVUNL.

MHI has also won an order for a steam turbine with a capacity of around 90 MW for a pulp and paper plant in China.

The plant in Rizhao, Shandong Province, is owned and operated by Indonesian manufacturer Asia Symbol (Shandong) Pulp and Paper.

MHI previously delivered two steam turbines to Rizhao plant in 2008 and the latest order is slated to go on-stream in 2015.

The turbine will be used primarily for in-house power generation to accommodate demand associated with augmentation of the plant facility.

ࢀ¢ Meanwhile, Mitsubishi Power Systems Americas (MPSA), the business base for MHI’s power systems operations in the US, has successfully completed verification testing of a large-scale selective catalytic NOx reduction (SCR) system.

The system is to be installed at an 800 MW large-size gas turbine simple-cycle power generation plant.

The testing was carried out at the Marsh Landing Generating Station in the San Francisco Bay Area, California, which operates on four Siemens 200 MW gas turbines, and MPSA said its SCR system reduced gas emissions, including nitrogen oxides (NOx) and ammonia, within compliance limits.

MPSA said the testing marked “a milestone achievement for the SCR system, demonstrating its capability to meet emission limits with a 200 MW class simple-cycle gas turbine”.

MPSA said its SCR system “successfully demonstrated the ability to keep within emission limits during quick starts and load changes and with gas turbine loads across the entire zero to100 per cent range”.

Ingeteam to supply inverters to one of Africa’s largest photovoltaic plants


Spanish electronics company Ingeteam is to supply its 1 MW central inverters to one of the largest photovoltaic plants in the African continent.

The project, Jasper PV, is to be built by a consortium formed by Iberdrola Engineering and Construction South Africa and Group Five, a South African construction company.

This plant is to have an installed output of 96 MW to be delivered to South Africa’s grid via the 78 INGECON SUN PowerMax central inverters which Ingeteam is to supply inside its 40ft, 2 MW power station shelters.

Ingeteam is also to provide the plant with its INGECON EMS Plant Manager control system, which will be responsible for ensuring compliance with all requirements of the grid operator and South African regulations.

The Jasper project will be equipped with 325 000 polycrystalline modules covering 180 hectares in the province of Northern Cape.

Underwater cable delivered for UK and Ireland HVDC link

ABB has announced delivery of what it calls the world’s highest capacity high voltage direct current (HVDC) light underwater power link to Eirgrid, the Irish transmission system operator.

The 500 MW cable is to operate as a link between Ireland and the UK, and enables leveraging of wind energy and facilitates power flows between the two countries and is based on voltage source converter (VSC) technology.

The cable will enhance grid reliability and security of electricity supplies and facilitates power trading between the two countries and connects Ireland to the European grid.

As Ireland expands its wind power capacity, it can export surplus electricity to the UK, and can import power when required.

A 262 km cable system connects Woodland in County Meath, Ireland and Deeside in north Wales. The cables are equipped with extruded polymeric insulation that provides strength and flexibility to endure the severe conditions of the Irish Sea. HVDC Light’s ‘black start’ capability can help restore power quickly in the event of an outage, without the aid of external energy sources.

HVDC Light is an evolution of HVDC technology that helps address the needs of long distance underground and subsea transmission. It is increasingly being deployed across many applications, including integration of renewable energies from land-based and offshore wind farms, mainland power supply to islands and offshore oil and gas platforms, and interconnections, often across seas.

GE celebrates Estonian wind turbine debut

Estonian wind turbine

GE has opened the 45 MW Paldiski wind farm on the Pakri peninsula in north western Estonia.

With 18 GE 2.5-100 wind turbines, the wind farm – operated by Eesti Energia and Nelja Energia – marks the commercial debut of the company’s wind turbine technology in the country.

Cliff Harris, general manager of GE Renewable Energy Europe, said: “Advancements in serviceability and grid integration from earlier GE turbine models make the 2.5-100 turbine a great fit for Estonia’s robust wind conditions.”

Estonia erected a record number of wind turbines last year with a total capacity of 86 MW that resulted in an overall capacity of 269 MW.

Chinese hydropower milestone for Voith

hinese hydropower milestone for Voith
hinese hydropower milestone for Voith

Voith has announced the commissioning of the first of three Francis turbine-generators with an installed capacity of 784 MW, at Xiluodu hydropower plant in China.

The Xiluodu plant, which lies on the Jinsha River, experienced a successful 72-hour test run prior to Voith’s handover to China Three Gorges Corporation.

With 784 MW the output of the generator-turbine unit in Xiluodu is higher than that of the world’s largest hydropower plants and consequently sets new standards, according to Voith.

Upon completion, the total capacity of the three Voith units for Xiluodu will be roughly the same as the output of Germany’s largest nuclear power plant.

Voith Hydro chairman Roland Munch said the commissioning of the first turbine generator is a milestone towards the first 1 GW unit.

When Xiluodu is fully connected to the grid in June 2014, it will have a nominal capacity of 13.86 GW, making it the world’s third largest hydropower plant.

Malaysian utility breaks ‘four-minute mile’ of certification

Malaysia’s largest utility has achieved a leading asset management certification.

Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) has been certified by Lloyd’s Register to the Publicly Available Specification PAS 55-1:2008 (PAS 55) – making it the first company in South East Asia to win the certification.

TNB is the largest electricity utility in Malaysia and one of the biggest in Asia. It is the national transmission system operator responsible for the Malaysia’s main grid.

Its president Y.Bhg Datuk Seri Ir Azman Mohd said: “In these modern and challenging times, we have to make sure our ability is still relevant in the industry.

“We must also strengthen our position to progress and make TNB a company that is dominant domestically and a champion regionally. I believe PAS 55 is an enabler for this ambition.”

“We are very proud to be the first company in South East Asia to achieve this certification.

He compared trying to achieve the certification to “the four-minute mile, which initially was thought of as physically impossible”, and added: “Our certification will set an example and I’m expecting many more companies in the region to follow our approach to achieve this milestone.”

Lloyd’s Register’s work in the certification process involved a two-stage assessment before recommending TNB’s transmission division for certification. This process included an examination of the design of TNB’s asset management system and processes, followed by a second review where the asset management system was tested across the company’s transmission division.

Mohd Azhar Sulaiman, managing director of Lloyd’s Register Technical Services in Kuala Lumpur, said: “As TNB is the first company in South East Asia to achieve this type of certification, it sets a glowing example to other businesses throughout the world that good asset management is an important factor in any business and should be recognised from a company’s daily operations to the boardroom agenda.”

Technology Update

Vattenfall hails wind farm radar breakthrough

Vattenfall hails wind farm radar breakthrough
Vattenfall hails wind farm radar breakthrough

Swedish energy company Vattenfall has invested in innovative radar technology to enable it to go ahead with extending one of its offshore wind farms in the UK.

Vattenfall claims that its deal with American firm C Speed marks the world’s first ever permanent installation of a fully wind farm-capable radar system.

The system, called C Speed LightWave radar, is currently on trial at Manston Airport in Kent, England, which is the nearest airport to Vattenfall’s Kentish Flats offshore wind farm.

Kentish Flats was built in 2005 and comprises 30 Vestas turbines. Vattenfall wants to add a further 17 turbines to the site but there were concerns on the impact this would have on air traffic at Manston, which is mainly used by Dutch airline KLM to fly to The Netherlands, France, Italy and Portugal.

The airport is also to be used as a base by BA for its Airbus A380, the world’s largest passenger plane, where it will be used to train pilots and cabin crew.

Vattenfall’s solution was to contract C Speed to design and install its system at the airport, where it is currently gathering data. If it proves successful it will be the first time that a wind farm-capable radar has been installed, integrated and then submitted to regulator the Civil Aviation Authority for approval.

Vattenfall’s project manager for Kentish Flats, Goran Loman, said: “We gained consent for this scheme earlier this year on condition we tackle this radar issue effectively. Vattenfall is confident the C Speed system will mitigate the potential impact of our project on Manston Airport and we look forward to getting the condition discharged to allow the wind farm and the airport to safely co-exist.”

He added: “If this technology works, as we expect, it’s hoped the UK government will be satisfied this issue has been dealt with.”

Time for T? New T-pylon could debut at Hinkley Point


An innovative new electricity pylon could be used for the first time at the site of Hinkley Point C new nuclear power station in the UK.

The T-pylon is the brainchild of Danish engineering firm Bystrup and in 2011 won an international design competition run by the Royal Institute of British Architects to find a new-look pylon for the 21st century.

It could make its operational debut as part of the Hinkley Point C Connection, which will run between Bridgwater and Avonmouth in England and will carry electricity for the southwest of the country.

The connection – which is to be built by British transmission operator National Grid – will include Hinkley Point C power station, which EDF wants to build next door to existing Hinkley reactors.

Communities living in the area feared that the new 400,000 volt pylons needed to carry the connection’s wires would be much higher than those on the existing 132,000 volt line currently running along the route.

However, at 36 metres high, the T-pylon is nearly one third shorter than the traditional 400,000 volt lattice design and engineers from National Grid are now working with landscape experts to identify sections along the connection’s route where the new pylon would have the most benefit.

It will then be included in the next round of public consultations on the connection in September.

Peter Bryant, National Grid’s project manager, said:”The steel lattice pylon has served us well and will continue to be used where appropriate but in September we’re looking forward to hearing people’s views on the T-pylon and where along the route it would be the best choice.”

UK Energy Secretary Ed Davey said: “To see T-pylon becoming a reality just 20 months after winning the competition is a fantastic achievement for National Grid and Bystrup.

He said the T-pylon was “a graceful, refined structure fit for the needs of our low carbon, 21st century” and would give communities “a radical departure from the traditional lattice”.

ABB launches iPad wind energy app

ABB launches iPad wind energy app

ABB has launched a dedicated Wind Energy Landscape app for iPads as a free download.

The app encapsulates ABB’s portfolio of products and services for onshore and offshore wind energy projects and was developed originally by ABB for use on its stands at renewable energy events.

However, the company said that it has proved so popular that ABB has now decided to make it available to the general public.

The app enables users to explore ABB’s commercial wind power solutions from within an interactive 360à‚º virtual landscape. The user is initially presented with the option to explore any of the three virtual wind solution areas: onshore, offshore (near), offshore (far).

After selecting their entry point, the user is presented with a virtual landscape containing all of ABB’s relevant wind solutions. Each solution is ‘tagged’ with interactive icons that indicate further information is available for each subcomponent. Using traditional touch screen gestures, the user can activate the icons to reveal further product information.

The application uses animations to describe some of the essential technical and operational features of ABB’s products and related services.

‘Most powerful wind test bench’ is operational

'Most powerful wind test bench' is operational

Vestas has activated what it calls the ‘most powerful test bench’ in the wind industry at its global testing centre in Aarhus, Denmark.

The 20 MW test bench is capable of testing the full nacelle of the V164-8.0 MW, validating the performance, robustness and reliability of the turbine over a simulated 25-year lifetime.

The test bench is 42 meters long and 9 meters wide. Its total weight, including the motors, wind simulator and generators is nearly 700 tonnes. Vestas installed 50 m deep concrete foundations to support the weight. Motors powering the bench produce 20 MW – the equivalent of 26 820 brake horsepower, and the torque exerted on the components of the turbine can be up to a massive 18 meganewton metres.

The enormous test bench will stress the drivetrain, including the gearbox, main shaft and generator of the V164-8.0 MW – in a controlled environment – reproducing the harsh wind conditions in the North Sea, using a comprehensive and rigorous test regime based on experience and data gathered from over 25 000 turbines.

Chief technology officer Anders Vedel said: “Vestas has invested in the industry’s most powerful test bench to ensure the turbine will perform in challenging conditions for 25 years.”

Green Energy picks Metso for African plant valve order

Metso has won its 10th repeat order from Norwegian company Green Energy Group for its Neles rotary control valves and triple eccentric disc valves.

The valves were tested in the company’s geothermal pilot plant in Kenya, where they will control the steamy process flow coming from the boreholes drilled into the ground.

The loosened soil from the ground can include silica and sand, which sets special requirements on the valves to be able provide accurate control ability in such rough conditions. One of the challenges in these applications is the silica scaling.

“Not many valves are able to operate in this type of environment,” said Snorri Einarsson, steam systems product manager at Green Energy Group.

He added that “the next step will be to get all the plants hooked up to the Metso FieldCare Device and Asset Management software to carry out predictive maintenance with live monitoring of the valve performance”.

Green Energy Group delivers a power plant system that is prefabricated in ready modules and commissioned on-site in weeks. This year the company is delivering four geothermal power plants and has received an order for five more for next year.

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