Daily News

Germany’s energy ministry (BWMi) has put forward rules to select areas for offshore wind farms in the North and Baltic Sea. In contrast to grid-connected wind farms which are chosen according to their guaranteed feed-in-tariff, the new offshore projects will generate green hydrogen directly at sea that is then brought ashore by ship or via pipelines.

The cost of producing hydrogen gas from renewables is forecast to fall sharply over the next decade, providing an affordable fuel to decarbonise the energy and transport sectors. In Germany and Texas, RES hydrogen costs could fall to $1.40 a kilogram by 2030 from the current range of $2.50 to $6.80, according to research published in Nature Energy.

Daroga Power, an investor and developer of distributed generation energy assets, has closed an infrastructure portfolio fund to deploy 32.85 MW of Bloom Energy solid oxide fuel cells. Approximately 6 MW of fuel cells in the portfolio are already operational, and the additional ones will be deployed through the end of 2022.

Inventories of natural gas in the US will reach 3,592 billion cubic feet (Bcf) by November 1, the start of the winter heating season – nearly 160 Bcf less than usual. High withdrawals in winter 2020/21 were not replenished this summer as dry gas production stayed flat while US LNG exports keep rising, leaving little for storage.

Rolls-Royce has invested over $600 million to revitalize manufacturing capabilities at its Indianapolis Operations Center. The upgraded facilities include digital engineering and robotics with a view to improving the company’s competitiveness in an increasingly contested marketplace for propulsion and power solutions.

GE has commissioned the Chia Hui combined heat and power (CHP) plant in Minxiong Township near Chiayi City in southwest Taiwan. Powered by a HA-turbine, the CHP adds approximately 535 MW of electricity to the grid – enough for 600,000 homes – as well as steam for district heating.

Wärtsilä will supply energy storage for the Beimen project in Kaohsiung city to help regulate grid frequency. The 5.2 MW / 5.2 MWh unit, ordered in early August, is due operational in the first quarter of 2022 and will help North Star earn revenue in Taiwan Power’s ancillary service market.

Heads of German industry are urging Berlin to allow the use of ‘blue’ hydrogen, made from natural gas while capturing carbon, for a transition period. 55% of the 2,500 surveyed decision makers, notably the steelmaker Thyssenkrupp and energy company RWE, want to use blue hydrogen which is cheaper to make than ‘green’ hydrogen.

Gas-burn for power generation will stay almost flat in India, as most of the country’s stranded gas-fired fleet is uncompetitive without subsidies or an outright collapse of international gas prices, the International Energy Agency (IEA) finds. Solar photovoltaic (PV), in contrast, is poised for “explosive growth” in India, matching coal’s share within two decades.

Finish technology group Wärtsilä will supply a 250 MW / 250 MWh battery energy storage system to AGL Energy for installation at the 1,280 MW Torrens Island Power Station in South Australia by early 2023. AGL plans up to 1 GW of grid-scale energy storage across Australia, mostly to back up renewables.

Near curve gas prices at the Dutch TTF trading hub must stay above the 15% coal-to-gas fuel switch trigger to displace enough gas from power generation to bolster Europe’s pre-winter storage inventories. Energy Aspects sees upside on TTF prices to €46/MWh amid risks over Russian flows this winter due to a possible delay of Nord Stream 2.

Chicago-based Exelon Utilities is gearing up to half its operations-driven emissions by 2030 and ultimately get to net-zero by 2050. To that end, it will convert a third of its vehicle fleet to electric, invest in energy efficiency and modernise the gas grid to minimize methane leaks.

People in Britain will face a substantial rise in energy bills after the industry regulator Ofgem increases the cap on prices that power generators can charge. Ofgem today announced energy suppliers can charge customers roughly £139 more from October, and customers on prepayment contracts will have to shoulder a £153 raise.

Speed, scale and scope of converting natural gas pipelines to carry low-carbon fuels such as hydrogen will support “deeper decarbonisation,” alongside a renewables build-out, IHS Markit finds. Many industries can switch to gas to reduce their carbon intensity, and conversion costs are economically viable at $40-$60 per ton of carbon.

News in Brief

Oseberg upstream shifts from oil to gas

Nov 29 – Equinor has announced plans to invest 10 billion Norwegian crowns ($995M) to change the Oseberg field from primarily being an oil field to becoming a substantial natural gas producer with large remaining gas resources. Oseberg is the third-largest oil producing filed on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, and the operator has submitted and amended development plan to the energy ministry.

ABB, Metacon and Wärtsilä partner on hydrogen

Nov 26 – ABB, Wärtsilä, Metacon affiliate Helbio, and the classification society RINA are jointly working on delivering a power solution for marine application that is fuelled by hydrogen. The aim is to have a scalable solution that will exceed the IMO 2050 target for a 70% reduction in carbon intensity without the need for extensive investment in new infrastructure. Wärtsilä gas engines can already run on a mix of hydrogen and LNG, and the company strives run them 100% on hydrogen fuel in the near future.

Wärtsilä enters Belgian energy storage market

Nov 25 – Wärtsilä has been contracted to supply a 25 MW / 100 MWh energy storage system to a Belgium customer, marking its entry into the Belgian energy storage market. The order was booked to Wärtsilä’s order intake in October 2021, and the system is scheduled to start operating in the fourth quarter of 2022.

Triveni agrees with GEAE Tech to manufacture LM2500 turbine in India

Nov 25 – Triveni Engineering & Industries has signed a 10-year accord with GEAE Technology USA to produce the LM2500 gas turbine base and enclosure locally in India. The turbine is the chosen propulsion equipment for many surface combatant vessels of the Indian Navy.

Wärtsilä launches lighter IQ-Series scrubber

Nov 24 – Wärtsilä has launched a new IQ Series exhaust gas treatment system, designed by its Exhaust Treatment business unit in Moss, Norway. Designed with a smaller footprint, the new scrubber takes up 25% less space, is 30% lighter, and has 35% less volume which makes it particularly adapt for use on container ships, but also for stationary engines.

Afreximbank signs loan for Aba IPP in Nigeria

Nov 23 – African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has signed a $50 million term loan facility for the Aba Integrated Power Project (IPP) in Nigeria, which comprises of a 141 MW gas-fired power plant and a 27-kilometer feeder pipeline and a distribution utility. Before greenlighting the loan, the bank advised projects sponsor Geometric Power on restructuring sol-called “gap capital” in the $332 million recapitalisation funds for the Aba IPP.

SiGreen tracks products’ emissions data

Nov 22 – Siemens has developed an ecosystem-based approach to calculate Product Carbon Footprint (PCF) with a with a view to track and reduce emissions. SiGreen helps exchange emission data along the supply-chain and combine it with data from a company’s own value creation to obtain a product’s true carbon footprint.

ELGi expands oil-free compressor series

Nov 19 – Belgium-based ELGi Compressors Europe has marketed introduced four new air compressors, the AB11, AB15, AB18 and AB22 that expand the company’s AB Series portfolio, ranging from 11KW to 110KW. The new the AB11-22 range helps customers optimize moisture separation, cooling and capacity control which directly translates into savings on electricity use.

Double-digit growth seen for GT market

Nov 18 – The market for gas turbines (GT) is forecast to witness a double-digit growth between 2021 and 2028, according to Global Market Vision projections. Leading manufacturers surveyed in the consultancy’s latest report include Doosan, Mitsubishi, MJB International, Siemens, GE, PW Power Systems, Solar Turbines, Dresser-Rand, Kawasaki, MAN Diesel & Turbo, OPRA Technologies, MTU Aero Engines, Wood Group and Chromalloy Gas Turbine.

Gazprom aims to increase contractual supply to VNG

Nov 17 – Russia’s Gazprom is in negotiations with VNG, one of Germany’s largest gas importers, to extending long-term gas supply contracts and “increase the supply volume thereunder.” Leipzig-based VNG imports and stores Russian gas in Germany’s eastern states and Berlin, and together with Gazprom it is building the Katharina underground gas storage (UGS) project with a design capacity of 650 million cubic meters (mmcm) of working gas volume and 26 mmcm daily withdrawal rate. The Katharina UGS is due completed in 2025.

Eaton offers IFPM73 fluid purifier with higher flow rate

Nov 15 – The Filtration Division of energy management company Eaton has added a higher volume flow rate system to its IFPM series of PLC-controlled, mobile, off-line fluid purifiers. Complementing the IFPM 33, which has a flow rate of 8 gpm (30 l/min), the new IFPM 73 has over double the flow rate of 20 gpm (70 l/min) for purifying oils and gas liquids stored in large tanks and reservoirs. 

General Fusion sets up new base in Tennessee

Nov 12 – General Fusion has set up a new operations base in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, as it seeks to commercialize fuson technology in collaboration with national laboratories, universities, and the U.S. government. This expansion will create up to 50  technical jobs. 

Bloom Energy delivers 1 MW renewable power from dairy farm waste

Nov 10 – Bloom Energy has been contracted to deploy a 1 MW fuel cell at Bar 20 Dairy Farms in Kerman, California, to produce on-site, renewable electricity from dairy cow manure. Dairy biogas contains up to 65% methane and the waste-to-energy project captures methane that would otherwise be released into the atmosphere. The installation marks Bloom’s first biogas project.

German TSOs want three phased-out coal plants as backup

Nov 9 – Three hard coal-fired power plants in Germany, due for phase-out and decommissioning next summer,  might have to stay onstream to ensure supply security after regional TSOs said the units were “system relevant”. It is now up to the federal grid agency BNetzA to decide whether the three plants, owned by Uniper, RWE and STEAG and situated in the state of North-Rhine Westphalia (NRW), will be given permission to stay operational or whether they need to be retrofitted or shuttered.

Wärtsilä to service GasLog LNG carriers

Nov 8 – Greek shipowner and operator GasLog has selected Wärtsilä to service and maintain ten of its very large LNG carriers. The agreement, signed in June, covers the vessels’ twin two-stroke dual-fuel main engines and includes AI-based condition monitoring and advanced asset diagnostic services.

EU CO2 price in focus of German climate policy

Nov 5 – Germany should think of its climate policy plans on a European and ultimately global level, economists Gabriel Felbermayr (Wifo Institute Kiel), Clemens Füst (Ifo Institute Munich) and Jens Südekum (University of Düsseldorf) said in a joint statement. The economists call for a Europe-wide CO2 price to act as a central instrument to reduce emissions whereby the EU emissions trading system should include all sectors, notably heavy industry and transport.

Transport sector struggles with 2030 climate goals

Nov 4 – Germany's new government must agree on a wide variety of policy instruments to achieve its 2030 climate target in the transport sector, a Prognos report says. "A high CO2 price alone is not enough to reach the tightened climate targets," analysts find, adding that "an ambitious mix of measures is necessary” to have a chance of meeting the new goals which are still subject to much controversy.