Daily News

Ammonia, already in use to fuel vehicles, could be used as a source of fuel for gas-fired power especially for off-grid applications, said US-based Space Propulsion Group (SPG). The research group is developing a system that transforms ammonia into hydrogen-based fuel to power combined-cycle plants.

The majority of new power plants built between now and 2035 will be gas-fired, accounting for 1,374 GW, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in its 2013 World Energy Outlook.

"We expect 96% of growth in energy demand will come from non-OECD countries, led by China in the short term with India expected to lead growth from 2020," IEA chief economist Fatih Birol said at the launch of the report in London today. Asia is set to take the lead in building new gas-fired plants with capacity addition forecast to total 353 GW, followed by the Americas with 266 GW and the Middle East with 153 GW.

Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula will see diesel- and fuel-oil power plants converted to run on natural gas after state-owned utility CFE has secured over 300 million cubic feet per day (mmcfd) in additional gas supply from Pemex by 2014.

The market for small scale generation in Asia Pacific is set to grow by 48% between 2013 and 2016 as increasing pressure on electricity grids spurs investment in localised gas and diesel-fired power solutions, according to Himoinsa, a Spanish manufacturer of reciprocating engines. "China, South Korea, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and Australia are posting the highest demand for gas generators due to a huge lack of energy and rising per capita costs," Manuel Aguilera, sales support engineer for Himoinsa, told Gas to Power Journal.

Siemens Energy has won orders worth over €300 million to deliver 20 SGT-800 industrial gas turbines to Thailand as part of a government's program to support small power producers.

Two of GE's LMS100-PB aeroderivative gas turbines at Inter RAO's Dzhubginskaya thermal power plant (TPP) that provide peak load power Krasnodar region also during the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia, have entered full commercial operation.

The European Commission has published guidelines to limit regulatory interventions in electricity markets through capacity payments and renewable subsidies with a view of making support schemes more cost-effective. Researchers at the Oxford Institute of Energy Studies criticised, however, "the guidance ....shows little sense of the urgency needed to address the increasingly dire situation of conventional back-up capacity for intermittent renewables."

Labour and the Green Party have criticised the central role of senior UK energy industry executives in shaping capacity mechanisms due to be launched as part of the Electricity Market Reform (EMR) but the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) described the knowledge and expertise of such secondees as "vital" to the policy making process.

To fill the gap between its 40+ MW aeroderivative LM6000s and 600+ MW industrial gas turbines, GE developed the LMS100. It takes the low pressure compressor designed for the Frame 6FA GT, runs the air through an intercooler, and then into a supercore which is based on the LM6000.
"In combination, this provides 100 MW of power and ten minute start times," said Phil Tinne, GE's LMS100 Product Manager.

Gas turbines may soon be able to utilise solar energy to operate with air inlet temperatures of 1,000C and above thanks to research to design new combustors and provide greater gas turbine efficiency. "We are investigating combustor designs that will facilitate higher temperature operation for lean-premixed combustors and allow us to harness greater percentages of solar energy to cut fuel costs," Klaus Brun, Program Director at the Southwest Research Institute (SWRI) told Gas to Power Journal.

U.S. power company, AES, has announced plans to sell its electricity generation and distribution business in Cameroon to Actis, a UK-based private equity fund, for $220 million in net equity proceeds. The deal will see AES affiliate, AES Société Nationale d'Electricité (AES-SONEL) divested after 12 years of ownership.

In a letter to Parliament, the UK Secretary for Energy & Climate Change, Ed Davey has asked for a cash advance of $4,069,000 from the Contingencies Fund to fast-track the launch of institutional frameworks to implement the Electricity Market Reform (EMR).

News in Brief

Energy storage for LNG-powered vessels

Oct 21 – Louisiana-based Harvey Gulf has asked Wärtsilä to retrofit its energy storage system (ESS) on four LNG-fuelled platform support vessels. Once upgraded in early 2022, all vessels will be of full tri-fuel operation.

Mott McDonald starts construction on ALCP6

Oct 20 – US construction firm Mott McDonald has started building the ALCP6 waste to energy project in Krabi province, southern Thailand. The plant will incinerate 144,000 tonnes per year of municipal solid waste, and the heat obtained will be converted into 6 MW of electricity to be exported to the Thai national grid.

Brace for EU sustainable finance rules

Oct 19 – Sustainable finance practices, drawn up by the European Commission, could create a "bureaucratic monster" that smaller companies and energy investors would find overbearing, the Munich-based Institute for Economic Research (ifo) warned. The regulation should hence prioritise closer scrutiny of large and listed companies.

UK could become net power exporter

Oct 16 – Increased interconnection could provide a route for excess offshore wind power in Britain to be consumed elsewhere in Europe. National Grid Interconnector Register shows up to 16 GW of interconnection could be operational by 2025 and up to 25.4 GW by 2030.

Wärtsilä to deploy GridSolv in US city

Oct 15 – AEP OnSite Partners has contracted Wärtsilä to deploy its GridSolv Quantum energy storage in the city of Martinsville, Virginia. The system includes an UL9540A limiting 2-hour battery firewall and will help lower the city’s energy costs.

Rolls-Royce spends $13.9m in Mankato

Oct 14 – Britain’s engine maker Rolls-Royce has decided to invest nearly $14 million in its Power System business to build a new R&D centre at its MTU manufacturing plant in Mankato, Minnesota, US. The expansion will see 28,000 square foot added to the facility’s existing hall, making room for the production of high-power MTU gas gensets, enhanced product testing and the creation of 20 new manufacturing positions.

Clarke commissions Vitalait power unit in Tunisia

Oct 13 – Clarke Energy and INNIO Jenbacher have completed the commissioning of an onsite power plant of a milk producer in Tunisia. The installation of another Jenbacher gas engine has increased the plant’s output to 4 MW of electricity as well as 1,100 kW of hot water and 800 kW of steam.

Secondary battery market to top $55bn

Oct 12 – Technavio expects the secondary battery market to grow by $55.62 billion through 2024, rising at an 11% rate over the forecast period. Falling costs for lithium-ion batteries as well as growing demand in Asia Pacific allowed the market to grow 2.01% this year, despite adverse effects of the pandemic. Top battery suppliers are Tesla, Clarious, Exide, LG Chem, GS Yuasa and Samsung.

Shift to sustainable tech

Oct 9 – Three quarters of utilities, surveyed by EIT InnoEnergy, are considering adopting sustainable technology over the next 12-18 months. However, over one third of the respondents found it hard to recruit the skills they need.

Generator rentals slow

Oct 8 – The rental market for power generators has slowed down due to the pandemic, with genset rentals from the oil and gas industry forecast to grow by just $153.87 million this year. However, Technavio expects the market will return to a 3% annual growth rate by 2024.

GE upgrades Italian CHP

Oct 7 – GE has completed an axial fuel staging upgrade on its 9E gas turbine at an onsite combined heat and power (CHP) plant at the Milazzo refinery in Sicily. The entire electricity needs of the refinery, over 780 GWh in 2019, will soon be supplied by the upgraded and more flexible gas turbine.

Operating assets ‘from anywhere’

Oct 6 – GE Digital’s latest software gives electric utilities remote and mobile control over their power stations for remote start-up, external monitoring and operational fine-tuning. The goal is to safe cost through autonomous operation from any location.

Chart wins order from New Fortress Energy

Oct 5 – Chart Industries has secured a second leasing order, worth $7.7 million, for ISO containers for LNG applications from New Fortress Energy for a project in the Caribbean. The US equipment maker sees double digit near-term growth in its repair, service and leasing business, notably from growing demand for LNG equipment for infrastructure.

Siemens energises Togo

Oct 2 – Siemens Energy has delivered a SGT-800 gas turbine and other components for the Kékéli Efficient Power plant project. Located in the Togolese capital Lomé, the 65 MW plant will cover almost 40% of country’s expected electricity demand.

Batteries get cheaper

Oct 1 – Cost for battery production is falling rapidly as manufacturers bring large Gigafactories on-line. By 2030, Bloomberg New Energy Finance anticipates battery pack prices to drop to $73 per kilowatt-hour, down from a current volume-weighted average of below $270/kWh.

Barclays may help fund Rolls-Royce

Sept 30 – UK’s prime engine maker Rolls-Royce is understood to be close to getting fresh financing from Barclays Bank. The Derby-based company, however, insists no final decision has been taken on the precise amount that may be raised or any allotment of shares to any investor.

Petronas to truck LNG to off-grid users

Sept 29 – Petronas Dagangan Group is gearing up to build a LNG truck delivery service for off-grid customers in Peninsular Malaysia. Trucks fitted with cryogenic tanks will bring the super-chilled fuel to remote industries and small-scale power generators with no access to the natural gas grid. Malaysia’s Peninsular Gas Utilisation (PGU) pipeline is only 2,500 kilometers in length and was initially built to export gas to Singapore.

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