Daily News

EU power demand is holding up better than anticipated despite declining gas consumption, Société Générale said today. Between January and April, EU gas consumption declined by 1.8% year-on-year (yoy) while electricity demand increased by 0.7%, respectively, figures in the bank's monthly demand report 'SG Energy Pulse' show.

The long-awaited UK draft energy is expected to favour new gas-fired and nuclear plants over renewables, as the Government is set to introduce new support schemes - including contract for difference -  as a price guarantee for power companies. The Government will propose a new draft law later today.

SPX Corporation has won a contract to supply an air-cooled condenser (ACC) for the proposed 1.3 GW gas-fired, combined cycle power plant in Warren County, Virginia.

During 2013, a SPX Cooling Technologies' 60 Module (10x6) SRC A-frame ACC will be installed at the plant, SPX said. Operational sart of the Warren County plant scheduled for December 2014.

Saudi Electric Company (SEC) is fast-tracking construction of its 12th gas-fired power plant project located near the Saudi Arabian capital of Riyadh. SEC said it aims to get the plant ready for commissioning in the coming 36 months.  

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has delivered four diesel engine power generators to the Republic of Palau as part of an emergency grant aid by the Japanese government to alleviate power shortages. MHI said installation work on the generators is slated for completion by the end of this month.

Dresser-Rand, a global supplier of rotating equipment solutions, has been commissioned by Max Bögl Group to install an indirectly fired KG 2-3 G gas turbine at its new biomass cogeneration plant in Bavaria, Germany.

Israel Electric Corp (IEC) has fast-tracked a tender for buying five gas turbines in an effort to bolster electricity supply ahead of the summer demand peak. Bidders for IES’s tender to buy five used mobile gas turbines (25 MW each) were asked to submit their bids within only 14 days.

Investors in new cogeneration plants in Spain eagerly await the introduction of a new support mechanism.

“An extension of the cogeneration tariff could prompt new investments worth up to €2,000 million for about 5,000 MW of new capacity by 2015,” Jose Luis Garcia, associate partner at Energia Local forecasts.

Profitability of combined cycle power plants (CCGTs) in Spain is likely to deteriorate further on rising electricity supply from solar PV and wind power generation. “We may not have reached the bottom yet. No investment in new CCGTs is likely in the next 10 to 15 years,” James Cox, Principal Consultant, Poery Energy Consulting, said at the ‘Gas to Power conference’ in Valencia today.

The share of LNG re-exports from Spain has risen to a record 30% of import volumes in 2012 as shippers divert cargoes contracted on flexible terms to profit from high gas prices in Asia, lga Vedernikova, LNG Divisions Director at Clarksons said today. Spain gas demand is forecast to remain on low levels, leaving regas capacity underutilized.

 The volatility of natural gas demand in Spain is set to rise as the integration of electricity and gas market intensifies, Maria Teresa Bravo, responsible of European gas infrastructure development at Enagas said today. "Natural gas is as a facilitator for Spain's rising renewable energy production, therefore gas infrastructure needs provide sufficient flexibility for gas to play that role, she said at the LNG & Gas-to-Power conference in Valencia.

Operating profit of Statkraft, Norway's largest utility, eased off slightly in the first quarter as the negative impact of lower power prices was offset by higher electricity production.

Japan's hunger for LNG imports to fuel gas-fired power plants is set to ease off gradually as a regional government approves the restart of nuclear reactors. Global LNG markets, however, are forecast to stay tight, investment bank JP Morgan forecasts.

German engineering conglomerate Siemens has started a second project on carbon capture and storage (CCS) with the Masdar Institute. The R&D projects focus on improvement and adaptation of proprietary Siemens Post-Combustion technology to CO2 capture at gas fired power stations, the Erlangen-based company said.

 Russia's energy minister Anatoly Yanovsky has backed efforts of Gazprom to go downstream by buying gas-fired power generation assets in Western Europe.

News in Brief

ABB spends $30m on transformer factory in Sweden

July 20 – ABB is investing more than $30 million in a new manufacturing unit, under construction in Ludvika, Sweden. The new unit will increase production, expanding the capacity and the range of its high-voltage dry bushings offering.

Wärtsilä’s order intake up 14%

July 19 – The Finish equipment manufacturer Wärtsilä has seen its order increase 15% to €1,553 million in the second quarter, while net sales fell 4% to €1,246 million. Looking at the full year 2018, Wärtsilä said its Services and Solutions business will “improve somewhat from the previous year.” Good demand prospects are on the cards for Energy Solutions, as the global shift towards renewables and rising electricity demand in the emerging markets support the need for distributed power capacity.

NRG abandons Dunkirk coal-to-gas conversion project

July 18 – Shying away from having to pay $114 million in re-interconnection costs, NRG Energy has shelved plans to repower and convert its mothballed Dunkirk power plant in western New York from coal to natural gas. The company said in a statement that it has withdrawn its request to have New York ISO interconnect the Chautauqua County generating facility with the power grid.

Akwa Ibom, BlackRhino sign $1.6bn power deal

July 17 – BlackRhino, operator of the Qua Iboe Power Plant (QIPP), has agreed with the Akwa Ibom State Government to build a power plant and electricity transmission lines in the state. QIPP’s management  committed an investment of $1.1 billion for the facility, with an additional $500 million for gas.

Rostec develops mobile LNG-fired power plants

July 16 – Russia’s state-owned holding Rostec has developed a mobile power plant on the basis of gas reciprocating units of Russian make. Running on LNG, the power plant can provide up to 1.4 MW of electricity and is employed to power remote settlement and oil upstream operations. 

First grid-scale LAES launched

July 13 – Highview Power has just launched the first grid-scale liquid air energy-storage (LAES) plant. Used for grid balancing, the 5-MW/15-MWh system, situated near Manchester, will be able to store and deliver enough electricity to power about 5,000 homes for three hours.

Henry Hub to test $2.90 mark

July 12 – Rising gas-burn in the U.S. power sector of 4.7 Bcf/d week-on-week is more than offsetting holiday-related reductions in industrial gas use, according to Energy Aspects figures. Natural gas prices at Henry Hub are expected to once more test the high $2.90s/MMBtu.

Gemma carries out EPC for 1.6GW project in Virginia

July 11 – Gemma Power Systems and Chickahominy Power have entered into an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services contract to construct the Chickahominy Power Station, a 1,600 MW gas-fired power plant, in Charles City County, Virginia. Developed by Balico, the project is anticipated to get underway in the first quarter of 2019 and be completed in the spring of 2022.

GE signs new Waukesha distributor in Nigeria

July 10 – GE’s Distributed Power business has signed an agreement with HOERBIGER Service Middle East FZE to be an authorized distributor for GE’s Waukesha gas engine products in Nigeria. With this deal, GE seeks to expand its Waukesha sales and services network near the point of use, given that Waukesha engines are suited for a variety of on-site mechanical drive, gas compression and power generation applications.

 

InnoEnergy and Swedish partners launch Power2U

July 9 – Europe’s sustainable energy engine, InnoEnergy, has joined forces with five Swedish energy firms to launch Power2U, its new venture to design and operate local energy systems that will integrate solar cells, EV chargers and batteries. The partners – Öresundskraft, Jämtkraft, Tekniska Verken, Umeå Energi and Jönköping Energi – and InnoEnergy will jointly invest 60 million Swedish Kroner ($6.69m).

Nigeria: Afam VI ready to supply 624MW

‎June 29 – The Afam IV gas power plant in Nigeria’s Rivers State is getting ready to supply 624 MW worth of electricity to the national power grid, barring any regulatory restriction. The start-up will help plug part of the gap in supply that opened following the latest outage of several thermal power stations.

ADB agrees $500m for Bangladeshi CCGT

‎June 28 – The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has agreed to provide a $500m loan for an 800MW combined-cycle gas power plant project in Khulna, Bangladesh. The loan will cover costs to build the CCGT as well as a 230kV switchyard and 29km of transmission lines to feed electricity from the plant into the national power grid.

KBR to consult on Oman LNG’s power plant project

‎June 27 – Houston-based KBR has won a project management consultancy services contract from Oman LNG for a new gas engine power plant. The 120 MW plant is meant to reduce fuel gas consumption and emissions while maintaining liquefaction processes at Oman LNG's existing export facility in Sur.

ABB launches molded case circuit breaker

‎June 26 – Zurich-based ABB has added a molded case circuit breaker (MCCB) for higher-voltage solar power plants to its Tmax PV range. The breaker is designed to protect combiners, switchgear and inverters up to 1500V direct current.

Heat wave to propel up CCGT dispatch

June 25 – Temperatures in England and Wales might hit 32 degrees Celsius next week, according to the UK Met Office, while a wind lull will almost erode the contribution of wind power and require flexible combined-cycle gas power stations to bridge the gap. According to Bloomberg Intelligence, “people are underestimating how many gas stations are needed for a windless week.”

Siemens builds microgrid in Finland

‎June 22 –  Lempäälän Energia has selected Siemens to implement a self-sufficient smart grid system in the industrial area of Marjamäki, Finland. The medium-voltage microgrid will be equipped with a corresponding grid automation system and an electrical storage system.

Toshiba R&D into battery anodes

June 21 - Toshiba and Brazil’s CBMM are jointly developing anode material for lithium-ion batteries using Niobium Titanium Oxide (NTO). The aim is to develop next-generation lithium-ion battery material, characterized by high-energy density and ultra-rapid recharging.