ASIA-PACIFIC

GE Hitachi Nuclear signs up for Indian reactor deal

GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH) has announced the signing of two agreements with the Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL) and Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) to build multiple GEH-designed nuclear reactors to help meet India’s energy production goals.

GEH, a world-leading nuclear technology and services provider, signed agreements with Mumbai-based NPCIL, India’s only nuclear utility, and New Delhi-based BHEL, the country’s leading manufacturer and supplier of power generation equipment and components.

The two government-owned companies are helping India expand electricity generation from nuclear energy by more than tenfold over the next two decades à‚— from 4.1 GW to 60 GW by 2032.

GEH will begin planning with NPCIL and BHEL for a potential multiple-unit 1350 MW Advanced Boiling Water Reactor (ABWR) nuclear power station. The first two units entered service in 1996 and 1997 and four additional units are under construction.

The memoranda of understanding were signed after GEH executives led a US nuclear industry trade delegation to India to explore potential opportunities to partner with local companies on future nuclear plant projects. Last year, India and the US agreed to co-operate in the field of nuclear energy.

Thailand scales back long-term power consumption forecast

Thailand has cut its power consumption projection for the next 12 years by 6408 MW, 11 per cent lower than earlier forecasts.

Energy Minister Wanarat Channukul said the latest projection indicated that generation in 2021 would be 51 792 MW à‚— an addition of 30 155 MW from 2008.

The increase would be supplied by the Energy Generating Authority of Thailand providing 11 769 MW, with an additional 6000 MW from large power producers, 1985 MW from small power producers, 546 MW from very small power producers, 5037 MW from neighbouring countries and 4800 MW from new projects.

Kyushu Electric to start pluthermal power generation

Kyushu Electric Power Company has unveiled plans to fire up the nation’s first plutonium-thermal (or pluthermal) power operation using mixed oxide fuel later this year.

The utility serving southern Japan is looking to load MOx fuel into the No.3 reactor at its Genkai nuclear power station in Saga Prefecture in August, with the intention of commencing full-scale pluthermal power production by November.

A shipment of MOx is expected at Genkai in late May/early June.

India’s seven year lock-in for foreign power equipment firms

India is considering a seven year lock-in period for Indian subsidiaries or joint venture operations of foreign companies setting up manufacturing facilities for new generation power equipment.

Presently, large and fuel-efficient super-critical equipment for new power projects, are not manufactured in India. As per current norms, 100 per cent foreign direct investment is allowed, with no provision to stop unreliable operators.

New norms are likely to be applicable in bulk tenders, to be floated by NTPC and Damodar Valley Corporation, for 660 MW power equipment based on super-critical technology.

So far five companies have expressed an interest in taking part in the bulk tender.

The equity lock-in clause is expected to ensure that there will be no bids from foreign firms whose track record is not satisfactory. It will make it mandatory for all interested companies to get a technology transfer agreement in place before bidding begins. In addition, companies will also need to have a license from the parent company to sell and manufacture its products in India.

Vietnam to build four coal power plants in 2009

The Electricity of Vietnam (EVN) will kick off construction of four coal fired power plants with a combined capacity of 3800 MW this year.

The plants are Nghi Son 1, Mong Duong 1, Duyen Hai 1 and Vinh Tan 2. The group also plans to put into operation nine power works with a total capacity of 2700 MW this year, including Pleikrong, Se San 4, Buon Kuop, Buon Tua Srah, Ba Ha and Ban Ve hydropower plants, and Hai Phong 1, Quang Ninh 1 and O Mon 1 thermo-electric power plants.

EVN also said it will focus on developing power grid projects to ensure energy security and improve distribution.

Black & Veatch wins Indonesian expansion contract

Black & Veatch has won a contract from Sumitomo, Japan, for work on the expansion of a power station in Central Java, Indonesia.

The Kansas, USA-based firm will add two 660 MW units to the Tanjung Jati B coal fired power station, doubling its overall generating capacity to about 2640 MW. It is scheduled for completion in 2011.

Sumitomo is developing the project for PT PLN (Persero), Indonesia’s state-owned power utility. Financial terms of Black & Veatch’s contract have not been disclosed.

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Australia: United Group is to deliver new sub-stations to Australian power and gas utility EnergyAustralia as part of the latter’s A$8.6bn ($5.6bn) network upgrade and renewal program for the Sydney, Hunter Valley and Central Coast regions.

Australia: Origin Energy has started construction of the 550 MW, gas fired Mortlake power station, located in south western Victoria. Bilfinger Berger Services is the major contractor for the construction of the plant; Siemens will supply the gas turbines.

Australia: The Victorian government has announced plans for a new A$100m ($68m) solar power station, with the capacity to power 50 000 homes.

China: The Pengze nuclear power plant in East China’s Jiangxi province will start construction this month. China Power Investment Corporation is the controlling shareholder of the 60bn yuan ($8.8bn) project.

China: Atlanta, US-based Navajo Wind Energy has begun negotiations for a joint venture partnership with Mingchuang Energy Manufacturing to manufacture wind turbines internationally.

India: Bharat Heavy Electricals (BHEL) has won a R810m ($16m) contract for the manufacture and supply of generator transformers for the Tirora thermal power project in Maharashtra.

Japan: Marubeni Corporation will use small-scale hydroelectric plants to produce 1000 kW of power. The company will sell the power back to local governments and companies.

Pakistan: BNP Paribas, HSBC Bank plc and the Export-Import Bank of China has signed a $150m credit agreement with Northern Power Generation Company Limited, for the construction of a 425 MW combined-cycle power project at Nandipur.

Philippines: The Korean Electric Company/SPC Power Corp is seeking a $100m loan from the Asian Development Bank to partly finance a $520m, 200 MW coal fired power plant located in Visayas.

South Korea: Seoul will place orders to build ten new indigenously-made wind turbines. The 2à‚—3 MW generators will be on land owned by three state-run thermal power plants by 2010.

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