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).
Swiss software maker, Coresystems, has raised €11.3 million in a first round of funding for its iPad app technology that simplifies the inspection of gas-fired power plants and other industrial processes. The funding has come from a consortium of private Swiss and German technology investors, including ex-SAP board member Peter Zencke.
Natural gas is the cheapest and most widely used fuel in Russia, exceeding 70% of the of fuel balance of thermal power producers in Russia. However, regulated prices distort the generating mix, GCE-Group president and CEO Aleksander Moskalenko warned regulated prices distort the market and pose a risk to security of energy supply.
Struggling to reign in losses in its Spanish home market Gas Natural Fenosa (GNF) has set out a strategy for post-2015 growth, focussing on midstream LNG, downstream gas distribution, and international electricity generation mainly in South America.
Tennessee based manufacture and service company, Clarcor has agreed to acquire GE's air filtration business for $265 million. The GE unit currently generates trailing 12 month revenues of approximately $230 million and has over 700 employees worldwide.
Up to 30 gigawatts of Japan’s mothballed nuclear power plants are expected to restart in 2014, displacing demand for natural gas power. “The power companies have actually already applied to restart 12 reactors with a total capacity of 11.2 GW, and others will come up over the next year or two no doubt,“ says Niall Trimble, managing director of the Energy Contract Company.
Lookheed Martin has developed technology to harnesses differences in sea temperature to gasify liquid and power a turbine at the surface. Together with Reignwood Group it has started to design a 10 MW pilot project which will be the world's largest Ocean Thermal Conversion (OTEC) power plant.