Daily News

General Electric has completed an upgrade at ELPEDISON’s Thessaloniki Power Plant in Greece. The modernization consists of a GE 9F.03 gas turbine, along with a Franco Tosi-supplied steam turbine, which together boost the plant’s output by 20 MW and reduce start-up costs by 10%.

Google has announced it will invest approximately €1 billion in digital infrastructure and clean energy in Germany. The US technology company signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) with the French utility ENIGIE to run its data centers in Germany at nearly 80% carbon-free energy on an hourly basis starting from 2022.

Production of associated gas from crude oil wells in the Permian shale has fallen after three years of steady growth as the Covid 19 pandemic depressed oil demand and production. Since 2020, the share of associated gas in all five US onshore crude oil-producing regions dropped 1.5% to just 37.7% of overall gas output.

West Burton Energy has been launched as a new independent power producer in the UK after the institutional investor EIG completed its acquisition of power gen assets from the French utility EDF Energy. The transaction includes West Burton B, a 1,332 MW combined-cycle gas turbine power station, and a 49 MW battery in Nottinghamshire, England.

Though massive efforts are underway globally to electrify industry and transport, this will not be enough to meet the Paris Agreement’s net zero emission goals, the classification society DNV warns. Scaling of hydrogen could take 20 years and is expected to “arrive too late to have the impact needed today.”

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) has deployed a “linear generator” – a mobile genset running on natural gas and biogas to displace diesel generators – at its Angwin microgrid in Napa County, California. Working with the local utilities Mainspring and NextEra Energy, PG&E installed the linear gensets for emergency power supply during winter storms.

Russia’s Gazprom has posted a 60% rise in net gas sales to 272.3 billion cubic metres for the six month ending June. Income from net sales doubled to 1.4 trillion Roubles ($19.8 billion), mainly due to the rise in average gas prices denominated in Rouble and higher volumes sold to Europe and China.

Mitsubishi Power, part of MHI Group, is developing combustion burners that can use ammonia (NH3) as zero-emission fuel in thermal power plants. Tests have been conducted with basic combustion furnaces to compile data on ammonia and coal co-firing and ammonia-exclusive firing, though the by-product nitrogen oxide (NOx) is still of some concern.

Japan’s largest LNG importer JERA has started a demonstration project for hydrogen co-firing at an LNG- fuelled power plant. Hydrogen does not emit CO2 when burnt; hence JERA is looking to co-fire its large-scale LNG thermal power plants in Japan with hydrogen or ammonia to achieve its zero-emission target.

Hurricane Ida made landfall at Port Fourchon, Louisiana, late Sunday, with 150 mph winds, devastating key energy infrastructure. Though the centre of the storm stayed some 45 miles southwest of New Orleans, the city experienced widespread power outages that accumulated to a full blown blackout.

British chemical company INEOS has dismissed the UK hydrogen strategy as “massively lagging behind Europe.” Whitehall said it would reach its 5 GW hydrogen target by 2030 by including hydrogen produced from natural gas through steam reforming, while the EU clearly favours ‘green’ hydrogen.

Researchers have measured the effect of microbes eating away some of the hydrogen stored in subsurface porous rocks. Though the majority of sites – 37 out of the 42 examined – are at risk of microbial effects, the actual hydrogen consumption is likely to be “negligible to small.”

Innowatts’ Core Analytics help power generators turn customer demand date into actionable insight. Analysis of smart meter data reduces forecasting errors by 20-40% which empowers the US retailer Direct Energy and the Colombian utility Celsia to tailor power plant dispatch, reduce the need to buy balancing energy and lower hedging costs.

TAQA Power, the Cairo-based subsidiary of TAQA Arabia, will set up a pilot project to locally produce green hydrogen in cooperation with MAN Energy Solutions. The German manufacturer will provide electrolysis technology for a hydrogen plant, due to run until autumn 2022.

News in Brief

Oman inaugurates 500 MW solar plant

Jan 26 – ACWA Power has inaugurated Ibri 2, an $417 million solar power plant with a capacity of 500 MW. The large IPP will sell solar power to Oman’s national grid over a 15-year period, backed up by flexible gas power plants.

GenCell raises funds

Jan 24 – Israel-based fuel cell maker GenCell Energy has raised $35.9 million in its latest funding round. CEO Rami Reshef said the fresh capital will accelerate developments in the field of green ammonia, pursued with TDK, as well as charging stations for electric vehicles.

German utilities invest record amounts

Jan 21 – Energy companies in Germany invested a record €20.5 billion in 2021, and the industry association BDEW expects capital expenditure will stay high throughout 2022. Out of the total sum, €4.3 billion were invested in electricity generation plants, €9.9 billion in transmission and distribution plants and €1.2 billion in other assets, such as metering points and information technology.

H2-powered plant for French Guiana

Jan 20 – Siemens Energy will set up a hybrid plant to supply stable baseload electricity to 10,000 households in French Guiana. An intelligent combination of 55 MW photovoltaics, an electrolyser to produce green hydrogen, fuel cells and energy storage is scheduled to be commissioned in the autumn of 2023.

Decarbonising UK homes

Jan 19 – Just 9 million hot water cylinders are currently installed in British homes, leaving a gap of 18 million homes whose heating would need to be decarbonised for the UK to meet Net Zero. According to the trade body HWA, the political focus of decarbonising heating has been solely on the heat source; such as boilers and heat pumps – while little to no focus has been on hot water cylinder. This gap in in government policy, which could result in unnecessary costs to consumers.

Cresta to fund Lapis Energy’s CCS projects

Jan 18 – Texas-based Cresta Fund Management has agreed to finance Lapis Energy’s CCS and clean hydrogen projects. The two partners are now looking to identify, design and develop projects for the permanent sequestration of CO2, targeting customers within the heavy industry and petrochemical companies.

GE to repower Long Lake plant

Jan 17 – GE will modernize four generors at the Long Lake hydropower plant in northwest US, operated by Avista Utilities. Once refurbished, the plant will have an installed capacity of more than 100 MW. The first modernized Long Lake unit is scheduled to go into operation at the end of 2024 and the last one in 2029

mtu to power Romania’s largest data center

Jan 14 – mtu Series 4000 gas generators will provide electricity heat and cooling for Romania’s largest data center. ClusterPower is building a 273,000-squaremetre technology campus near Craiova by 2025, where it will host five data centers with a Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) of 1.1

Green hydrogen from Quebec

Jan 13 – Charbone has agreed to provide the US propane distributer Superior with green hydrogen from its Sorel-Tracy facility in Quebec, Canada, starting from the third quarter of 2022. The hydrogen will be delivered directly from Charbone’s H2 plant to Superior’s customers which include mining, power generation, transportation and industrial energy users. 

Cresta to fund Lapis Energy’s CCS projects

Jan 12 – Texas-based Cresta Fund Management has agreed to finance Lapis Energy’s CCS and clean hydrogen projects. The two partners are now looking to identify, design and develop project for the permanent sequestration of CO2, targeting customers within the heavy industry and petrochemical companies.

US rivals Australia as world’s largest LNG exporter

Jan 11 – Analysts at the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) are confident that the growth in US LNG exports could see America’s liquefaction and send-out capacity exceed that of Australia and Qatar – the world’s two largest LNG exporters. Looking ahead, the EIA expects US exports of the super-chilled gas will rise 17% from 2021 levels to average 11.1 Bcf/d from December through March.

Africa’s first FLNG plant arrives in Mozambique

Jan 10 – Coral Sul FLNG, Africa’s first-ever floating LNG facility has arrived in Mozambican waters. The plant is critical to develop the US$7 billion Coral South project, led by the Italian oil and gas company Eni. Some of the produced gas will be used for power generation in Mozambique, though most will be liquefied and sold to global markets.

GE snaps up Opus One Solutions

Dec 23 – GE Digital has agreed to acquire Opus One Solutions Energy Corp, a Californian software company that helps utilities integrate renewables and Distributed Energy Resources (DERs) at scale across the electric grid. The transaction is expected to close within 30 days, GE stated without disclosing what price was paid for the takeover.

Qatar invests in Rolls-Royce’s nuclear power business

Dec 22 – Qatar Investment Authority, the state’s sovereign wealth fund, has agreed to invest £85 million in Rolls-Royce SMR, the company’s new technology for small-scale, low carbon nuclear power. UK business and energy secretary Kwasi Kwarteng called the investment a “clear vote of confidence” in the UK’s nuclear innovation. It follows £210 million Qatari investment in the development in Small Modular Reactors. Now fully funded, Rolls-Royce SMR business also received £490 million through commercial equity and UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) grant funding. 

JERA helps Japanese film producer curb emissions

Dec 20 – Toho, a Japanese film producer and entertainment company, will get support from the country’s largest power producer JERA to reduce CO2 emission from film production. To that end, JERA will supply zero-emissions energy to Toho and draw up a roadmap to decarbonise the media company as a whole.

Tractebel develop concept to store H2 offshore

Dec 17 – Tractebel Overdick and partners have developed an offshore infrastructure and processing facilities concept that relies on the storage of hydrogen (H2) in offshore caverns. The design study outlines a scalable offshore platform for the compression and storage of up to 1.2 million cubic meters of hydrogen.

Ethatec uses CO2-free power to produce ethanol

Dec 15 – ESG Clean Energy has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with Ethatec to use ESG’s patented CO2-free gensets to its ethanol production. Ethatec uses waste from bakeries and pizza factories which is being crushed and then mixed with water and enzymes and heated in a multi-stage mashing process to saccharify the starch. It is then cooled and fed into fermentation tanks, where yeast is added. for alcoholic fermentation of the sugar. After 72 hours, the mixture is fed to a distillation system where ethanol is obtained.