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Daily News

Green light has been given for the world's largest compressed natural storage plant in Grati, Indonesia, that will feed an adjacent 300MW gas-fired power plant, operated by state-owned utility PT PLN (Persero). Classification company RINA approved the design of the CNG plant, paving the way for start of construction works.

A proposal to use a gas power plant to support renewables in Colorado, US has been placed with the independent evaluator for the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). Xcel Energy representative Gabriel Romero said savings for consumers would come from Xcel replacing its own coal-fired capacity with gas-fired power from an unknown supplier, as "this power plant is offering us a lower power purchase agreement."

Using CO2 to generate natural gas on industrial scales is a step closer thanks to new technology developed by the Austrian firm, Krajete. The process can convert electricity to methane and has passed initial trials demonstrating the potential for industrial production.

Despite the substantial reductions in carbon emissions delivered by the switch from coal to gas generation due to the current boom in US gas production, report by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) suggests there will be a 'gas ceiling'.

As Russia shifts its outlook east and engages with China on a range of deals for oil, coal and power supply China, energy trade between the two neighbouring countries is likely to quadruple by 2025, according to Wood Mackenzie analysts. "If large projects are to be realised, Russia may have to allow deeper Chinese involvement," said Ian Thom, head of Russia upstream research, suggesting an gas supply deal will be reached in the next two years.

Gas-fired power will increase to account for 40 percent of the energy mix in the US market by 2035, spurring a growth in natural gas demand by one third, analysts with the consultancy ICF International forecast. Gas-fired power currently generates 1,000 Terawatt-hours per year (TWh/y) but new ICF figures expect this to double to 2,000 TWh/y.

Funding has been announced to develop new technology focused on carbon capture and storage (CCS) specifically for gas-powered UK plants. A request for proposals has been announced by the Energy Technologies Institute, a public-private partnership, to invest in a project which is expected to start in the middle of next year.

The UK carbon floor price is not sufficient to encourage CCS-retrofitting in fossil plants in the short-term, says Heather Haydock, Practice Director, Energy & Climate Change at Ricardo-AEA. Neither has backloading of carbon permits in EU-ETS has helped to prop up carbon prices beyond €6/ton – too low to incentivise CCS or a switch from coal to gas generation in much of continental Europe.

A pilot power-to-gas (PTG) project in Germany is being undertaken by E.ON, that converts renewable electricity into hydrogen gas. The gas is injected into the regional gas grid, easing the heavy loading of wind and solar power on electric grids, such as is present in Germany and around Europe, at the same time providing 'renewable' gas feed.

UK property developer partners St Modwen and Glenfinnan have joint forces to build a 299MW combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) power plant, Meaford Power Station, 50 miles south of Manchester, UK. "We are at an early stage of the project and are just about to introduce it to the local community to capture the details of the project," a Meaford Energy representative said.

Fuel cells have traditionally been associated with renewable technologies, as a means of offsetting generation intermittency problems, but as technology has reached maturity the range of applications and technologies has grown. Fuel cells increasingly provide opportunities for distributed downstream electricity, heat and gas generation and support local production, as well as easing grid requirements securing overall supply stability.

Shale gas will bolster security of supply in the UK, displace a proportion of LNG imports and underpin new gas power generation projects. Substantial volumes of shale gas production, however, are not expected to be forthcoming until the mid-2020ies, delegates at the Gas to Power Britain conference learnt.

News in Brief

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.

Siemens to reduce emissions at NLNG

Sept 28 – Nigeria LNG has contracted Siemens Energy to provide a cryogenic boil-off gas (BOG) compression train for its liquefaction plant on Bonny Island. The new BOG train will be driven by an high-efficiency electric motor and includes two compressors. Manufactured in Duisburg, Germany, the equipment will be delivered in the fourth quarter of 2021.

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