Daily News

Japan’s Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions (ESS) has agreed with the National Electrification Administration (NEA) of the Philippines to jointly promote H2One – autonomous, hydrogen-based energy systems and the use of hydrogen as a fuel for power generation. In a study, both partners will evaluate the optimum system specifications in the Philippines, where half of the current energy supply is comes from coal-and oil-fired power stations.

Wärtsilä today reported a lower than expected quarterly profit due to a slowdown in services while order-intake in its power plant business remained stable. “Net sales developed well in the third quarter, thanks to the strong growth in newbuild marine and energy deliveries. This, in combination with slower development in transactional service volumes, is affecting the group sales mix and burdening profitability,” said Wärtsilä CEO Jaakko Eskola.

A banking consortium led by JBIC, the state-owned Japan Bank for International Cooperation, has agreed to lend US$1.31 billion for a LNG-fuelled power generation project on the Indonesian island of Java. With a capacity of 1,760 MW, the power station will build and operated by Marubeni, Sojitz and Persero, while LNG supply will be arranged by Mitsui O.S.K. Lines. Start-up is scheduled for 2021.

Annual capacity factors for gas-fired power generators in the PJM Interconnection – the largest competitive wholesale electricity market in the United States – have increased in recent years, reflecting greater use of competitively priced shale gas in the region. The role of combined-cycle gas power plants (CCGTs), in particular, has shifted from load-following to frequently providing baseload power supply, instead of coal.

Siemens and General Electric, two rival global engineering companies, are at loggerheads over a multi-million dollar power generation deal in Iraq. The Trump administration now intervened and put severe pressure on the Iraqi government to award part of a $15 billion contract – first discussed and pre-arranged with Siemens – to GE Power & Gas.

Qasim Al-Fahdawi, the Iraqi electricity minster has signed a milestone agreement with Siemens CEO Joe Kaeser over the weekend to implement the company’s ‘Roadmap for repowering Iraq.’ Plans are to add 11 GW new gas-fired power plants in Iraq within four years, which would effectively boost existing capacity by almost 50%.

The pipeline rupture in early October at Enbridge’s BC gas interconnector still affects electricity markets and petroleum refining in the U.S. Pacific Northwest. Imports averaged 1.1 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) in the first half of this year, but fell to zero after the rupture and the pipeline now operates only at 80% capacity.

The global energy transition moves faster than expected Wood Mackenzie says, suggesting a "sustainability tipping point"  – when the world shifts from the ‘Age of Oil & Gas’ to the ‘Age of Renewables’ – will arrive by 2035, less than 18 years from now. Renewables and the use of electric vehicles are seen underpinning the pace and intensity of the transition.

As decommissioning of coal plants and grid-integration of renewables lead to rising variability of power supply in the area of the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), GE and Clarke Energy have been asked to supply a turnkey combined heat and power (CHP) plant to Sebewaing Light & Water (SL&W), a municipal utility. The CHP is slated to start operating in Q1-2019.

Striving to roll-out battery storage, Duke Energy has announced to invest $500 million in several projects spread across North and South Carolina over the next 15 years. In total, the storage projects will have a combined capacity of 300 MW.

Iran’s MAPNA Group has been selected to supply turbines and generators to the Jandar combined-cycle gas power plant, under construction in Western Syria. Turbine delivery to the Jandar CCGT is part of a wider contract that will see MAPNA supply generating equipment to a total of 65 power units with a combined capacity of over 9,600 MW.

TenneT, Thyssengas and Gasunie Deutschland have announced plans to build a power-to-gas plant, designed to turn renewable energy into gas for industrial use in the Ruhr region. With an output of 100 MW, it will be the largest P2G plant of its kind in Germany, and is scheduled to be operational by 2022.

PW Power Systems, part of MHPS Americas, has signed up its first customer active in oil & gas upstream. U.S. Well Services (USWS) ordered 30-megawatt FT8 MOBILEPAC aero-derivative gas turbine generators to power its new electric frack fleet. USWS said its first two new-build  fleets will be deployed for two of its customers during the first quarter of 2019.

Alexey Miller, Gazprom Chairman and CEO, stays adamant in arguing China will prefer stepping up pipeline gas imports over incremental LNG supplies to meet the country’s rising energy demand. “Pipeline gas supplies from Russia will always be more competitive than LNG deliveries from any other part of the world,” Miller said, pointing out that Gazprom’s annual gas exports to Chinese buyers will reach 120 billion cubic meters this year alone.

Substantially less nuclear power supply has been available throughout the U.S. this autumn, mainly because the 2018 seasonal maintenance and refueling cycle began earlier. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the total nuclear outages averaged 14.5 GW in the last week of September, prompting utilities to fire up gas-fuelled power stations to balance supply and demand.

News in Brief

More buyers for Malampaya gas

Dec 12 – Two more electric utilities, in addition to First Gen and Ilijan, have expressed interest to buy Malampaya’s banked gas, valued at $700 million to $750 million, via a negotiated scheme. The Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC) is in talks with all four of them, but did not identify the two new bidders.

Surge in wind power new-builds

Dec 11 – More than 680GW of new wind power capacity will come online globally over the 10-year outlook, according to Wood Mackenzie research. Most upgrades occur in the medium-term, boosting annual capacity additions from 2020 to 2023 by an average of 2.7GW.

Hybrid power for Galapagos Island

Dec 10 – Siemens has inaugurated a hybrid power plant on the Galapagos island of Isabela after only ten months of planning and ten months of construction. The system runs carbon-neutral with biofuel and solar energy and supplies almost 900 households.

Tata unveils TCS Intelligent Power Plant

Dec 7 – Tata has presented it TCS Intelligent Power Plant at an U.S. trade show, combing its engineering knowledge with artificial intelligence (AI) to optimize operations of fossil power plants. The TCS Intelligent Power Plant builds on the digital twin concept and data-driven models.

Aker, Siemens to co-develop digital offerings

Dec 6 – Aker Solutions and Siemens have agreed to collaborate on creating software applications and joint service offerings, e.g. industrial digital twins that will drive efficiency throughout the entire plant lifecycle. Specific offerings for the oil and gas sector will be based on Siemens' Comos engineering platform.

Robot for remote inspection

Dec 5 – Sarcos Robotics is demonstrating their Guardian S mobile IoT inspection robot at POWER-GEN International in Orlando, Florida. The remote visual inspection tool that can carry multiple sensor payloads and is a quick-deploy inspection solution for pipes, boilers and tanks.

JERA still builds coal power plants

Dec 4 – JERA, Japan’s largest LNG importer, said it was still replacing ageing oil-fuelled power plants with coal-fired units, instead of gas, for economic reasons. Environmental permits have just been issued for two new coal power units at Yokosuka power station, south of Tokyo.

GE delivers grid solution to Pakistan

Dec 3 – GE Power has delivered a turnkey solution to DG Khan Cement Company (DGKCCL), for its new cement plant. Situated 30km northwest of Karachi, the new manufacturing facility is powered by GE’s advanced grid solutions including 132/6.3 kV gas insulated switchgear (GIS), 40MVA power transformers.

Rolls-Royce to showcase Bergen genset

Nov 29 – Rolls-Royce will showcase its new B36:45 Bergen gas genset at the 2018 Power-Gen International show next week in Orlando, Florida. This will be the first time the company introduced Bergen engines at a U.S.-based trade show.

Toshiba aggregates RES & energy storage

Nov 28 – Tokyo-based Toshiba will reinforce its green energy footprint by spending 100 billion yen ($175m) on a new biomass power plant near the thermal Mikawa power station in Omuta, Fukuoka prefecture. Going forward, Toshiba aims to aggregate all its renewable energy sources and storage batteries, creating a Virtual Power Plant (VPP).

Exmar helps Argentina export LNG

Nov 28 – Belgium's Exmar has signed a 10-year agreement with YPF to produce and export 500,000 tonnes per annum of LNG from Argentina via a floating liquefaction vessel named Tango FLNG. The deal advances Argentina’s ambitions of becoming a gas exporter.

ABB UPS tops 97% efficiency

Nov 27 – ABB latest uninterruptible power supply (UPS) module has a 97.6% efficiency rating. The DPA 250 S4 covers the power range 50 to 1,500 kW and is designed for critical, high-density computing environments such as data centers, hospitals, railway signaling stations and airports.

Europe still depends on Russian gas

Nov 26 – In the first ten month of 2018, there was a more than 100:1 disparity between Russian pipeline gas and U.S. LNG deliveries to European countries, according to Gazprom figures. The Russian gas giant sees still “a high level of uncertainty” in the long-term forecasts for U.S. shale gas production.

Enagas, Fluxys sell stake in Swedegas

Nov 23 – The Belgian and Spanish TSOs, Fluxys and Enagas, have sold their entire shareholding in Swedegas to First State Gas Transport AB, part of the infrastructure fund First State Investments. The two TSOs each owned a 50% stake in the operator of Sweden’s high-pressure gas grid.

Developing alternative fuels

Nov 22 – Wärtsilä, Finland’s Lappeenranta University of Technology and Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) are developing a business case for the use of alternative fuels with Wärtsilä generating sets. In focus are methanol, dimethyl ether and ammonia, synthesised from hydrogen, CO2 and nitrogen.

UK will not incentivize new gas storage

Nov 21 – Rebuking warnings of gas supply shortages, the UK government said it will not give any regulatory support for new gas storage facilities. Insisting that “the benefits of more insurance are not worthwhile,” energy secretary Greg Clarke said, insisting the market was already providing sufficient gas security and optionality.

PG&E uses SF6-fee switchgear

Nov 20 – California’s Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) has contracted Siemens to supply SF6-free dead-tank circuit breakers and gas-insulated switchgear (GIS). They are destined for California’s 115-kilovolt (kV) high-voltage grid.