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Power ship adding 35MW to national grid – GPL’s CEO

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…says to reach full generating capacity today after final testing

Less than two weeks after being operationalised, the 36-megawatt (MW) power ship is expected to reach full capacity in the coming days, according to acting Chief Executive Officer of the Guyana Power and Light Inc. (GPL) Kesh Nandlall.
Earlier this month, GPL had reported that the power ship was generating 18 MW into the Demerara Berbice Interconnected System (DBIS). The vessel started injecting power into the national grid since May 9 and the plan was to incrementally increase the generating amount until the full 36 MW capacity is achieved.

GPL’s CEO (ag), Kesh Nandlall

Speaking with the Guyana Times on Sunday, Nandlall explained that since then, the power ship’s generating capacity was gradually increased and by Saturday morning, it went up to 35MW.
“We haven’t gone up to 36MW as yet; we’re at 35MW right now. [Today] we’re doing the official capacity-testing, which is as part of the contract, where they will go and they will test the capacity to deliver 36MW. They can go to 36 right now but they’ve chosen to stay at 35 until we do the capacity-testing,” he explained.
According to Nandlall, they are confident that the power ship will be able to deliver full capacity, noting that there were no major issues experienced since its operationalisation nearly two weeks ago.
“[There were] no issues. What they did was to bring the engine up, take it back down and they had to do some regular checkup and these kinds of things to ensure that everything is in order but no issues,” the GPL Head stated.
The floating power plant arrived in Guyana on May 1 and has been docked at Everton on the East Bank of Berbice in Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne), where it will be stationed for the next two years as it sends electricity into the DBIS.
Over the past few weeks, GPL has been preparing the necessary infrastructure for the 36-MW power ship to be connected to the national grid.
The power company had noted that in addition to its internal Engineering Services Division, Transmission and Distribution, and Protection and Instrumentation employees, the National Data Management Authority (NDMA); GAICO Construction and General Services Inc., and E-Networks made an “invaluable contribution” towards realising this initiative.

The transmission lines from the power ship connecting to GPL’s DBIS network at Everton, Berbice

Nandlall previously told this newspaper that specialists have been brought in to ensure that the transfer of power from the vessel into the grid was done without any hiccups.
“They are taking their time, documenting the procedure and they will execute this successfully… “There was a lot of testing that had to be done, synchronising [the ship] to the grid… because that is a lot of power – it’s a new power plant so you had to ensure you do all the testing and procedures and so on,” he had related.
Only two weeks ago, Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo had said the Government hoped that this connection would be able to stop the frequent blackouts experienced by Guyanese in recent months as a result of low generating capacity. In the same breath, however, he said there could still be some power outages.
“We’re hoping that with the 36 megawatts now added to the system, that we’ll have enough power in the system to end the current spate of blackouts which comes from the unavailability of power… There may be isolated instances, because of the poor transmission and distribution system,” Jagdeo had noted.
According to the Vice President, Government was still looking to get an additional 30 megawatts of power through a similar arrangement until the much-anticipated Gas-to-Energy Project comes on stream next year.
Last month, GPL signed a multimillion-dollar deal with Qatar-based Urbacon Concessions Investments, W.L.L (UCI) for the rental of the 36-MW floating power plant for two years in a move to add much-needed capacity to the grid. While the rental deal was signed with UCI, the power ship is owned by Turkey-based Karpowership International.
As part of this agreement, GPL has already paid a US$1 million mobilisation fee. The power company also has to pay a fee of 6.62 US cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) as a monthly charter fee for the power ship and a monthly operation and maintenance fee of 0.98 US cents per kWh based on electricity generated. GPL is also required to provide Heavy Fuel Oil (HFO) for the operation of the generators onboard the vessel.
The State-owned power company has been experiencing generation shortfalls due to an unprecedented rise in electricity demand coupled with challenges from its aged equipment. In March, two of GPL’s engines failed disrupting power generation across the country.
Before this vessel connected to the grid, GPL was generating about 165 megawatts of power. However, the peak demand is about 180 megawatts. (G8)

The post Power ship adding 35MW to national grid – GPL’s CEO appeared first on Guyana Times.

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