Daily News

GE Grid Solutions is investing tens of millions of dollars to expand its range of sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)-free substation equipment. By 2025, the offering will include SF6-free gas-insulated substations and instrument transformers up to 420 kV, as well as circuit breakers up to 550 kV.

US-based Excelerate Energy will proceed with developing a floating LNG import terminal in the Bay of Batangas, Luzon, having received the go-ahead from the Philippines. The FSRU will supply gas to power stations in the region, ensuring stable electricity for metropolitan Manila.

Japan has committed to invest $10 billion in LNG import infrastructure and related power projects in India and Southeast Asia. The initiative is backed by public-sector financing from JBIC, and analysts expect it will help LNG compete with other fuels like coal in emerging economies.

Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO) has developed artificial intelligence (AI)-based gas turbine monitoring. The system collects and analyses data from sensors installed in generators to predict parts malfunction and preempt turbine failures.

Natural gas is set to become a 'high-carbon fuel' after 2025, as the perception of gas generation changes over time amid EU member states trying to reach the European Commission's carbon reduction goals. "In the short-term, we need gas [generation] to keep the lights on," but analysts stressed "Carbon Capture Storage (CCS) will need to kick off after 2020."

Specialty chemical group Evonik Industries has contracted Siemens to build a combined-cycle power plant as a turnkey project at the Marl Chemical Park in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. The two-unit CCGT will replace Evonik’s onsite coal power plant by 2022.

The American Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has introduced a three rules. Operators need, among others, reconfirm the material strength of their lines to ensure safe transport of the abundant U.S. natural gas production to LNG export terminals, domestic industry and power generators.

To meet burgeoning demand, Southeast Asia will have to invest an average of $17 billion per year in on new power generation units. Cheap coal is forecast to cover the lion’s share, before being overtaken by gas and renewables starting from 2034.

French power company EDF has admitted today that works for the Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant are running 15 months late and will cost nearly £3 billion more than the planned £22 billion. Critics dismiss new nuclear as expensive, compared with cheaper cost for gas gensets and offshore wind.

Fast-growing Asian economies will trigger a nearly 50% rise in world energy consumption by mid-century, according to the International Energy Outlook 2019. Gas use in non-OECD countries is set to surge 70% to reach 120 quadrillion British thermal units (Btu) in 2050.

India’s energy giant Petronet has signed a $7.5 billion agreement with Tellurian to take a stake in Driftwood LNG and import 5 mtpa. If supplies can be delivered at a close-to-fixed-price, analysts see it as “extremely attractive” for ensuring downstream sales to Indian power producers and industry.

South Korea’s state-run KOGAS has agreed with BP to buy 1.58 million tons of US LNG annually starting from 2025. The deal is worth an estimated $9.61 billion over 18 years and will help facilitate a coal-to-gas switch in the Korean power sector.

Government auctions aimed at shutting down Germany’s hard coal-fired power plants are estimated to cost the state some 1.2 billion Euros in ‘decommissioning premiums’ by 2030. But these substantial payments will likely not be enough to make operators shut down 13 GW by 2030, as planned.

Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction, a key South Korean contractor for energy projects, has managed to develop a proprietary large-scale gas turbine. With its new DGt6-300H S1 model, Doosan HI is now vying to compete with the Big Four of GE, Siemens Ansaldo Energia and MHPS.

Wind power could soon be cheaper in Britain than electricity from gas-fired power plants. Contracts for difference (CfDs), awarded at auction for nearly 6 GW of new wind farms, came in at £8-9/MWh below the government’s ‘reference price’ for electricity in the open market.

News in Brief

Rolls-Royce, 2G Energy cooperate on gas gensets

Nov 12 – British engine maker Rolls-Royce and the German power plant manufacturer 2G Energy have signed a cooperation deal to mutually purchase and promote each other’s gas generators. Rolly-Royce will buy gas gensets in the 250 - 550 kilowatt range from 2G Energy and re-sell them under its MTU brand, replacing the previously used MTU Series 400 engine. In return, 2G Energy agreed to buy MTU Series 4000 gas generators in the 776 - 2,535 kilowatt range from Rolls-Royce and market it to its German customer base.

Global gas glut may clear in 2021

Nov 11 – Economics of exporting American liquefied natural gas to Europe no longer add up. With Henry Hub spot prices around $2.7/MMBtu, moving LNG cargoes from the U.S. Gulf Coast to Europe is “not workable,” BP analysts said, indicating that production shut-ins could help clear the massive supply overhang towards the end of 2021.

Gazprom reassures Germany of Ukraine gas transits

Nov 8 – Alexey Miller, chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee, has been trying to reassure the German government commissioner Georg Graf Waldersee that Russia was ready to signing a new transit contract with Naftogaz if both companies mutually waive claims. Before gas flows can proceed, however, Ukraine will have to create an independent gas transmission operator by January 1, 2020.

GE makes gains in wind power

Nov 7 – GE Power is gradually turning away from its loss-making fossil power segment to focus on the fast-growing renewable business. This week, GE struck a deal for its new Haliade-X turbines to be used at Dogger Bank Wind Farms. The three 1.2 GW Dogger Bank projects, situated offshore the UK’s Yorkshire coast, are expected to trigger approximately £9 billion of capital investment between 2020 and 2026.

PetroVietnam eyes LNG-to-Power project

Nov 6 – PetroVietnam has signed an agreement with B.Grimm Power Public Company (BGRIM) to jointly study the development of an integrated LNG import and power generation project. The aim is to build a 3,000 MW gas-fuelled power plant and an adjacent LNG import terminal. The location of the project has not been disclosed.

ABB launches ‘Smart City’

Nov 5 – Electrification specialists of the Swiss manufacturer ABB have designed an interactive ‘Smart City’ that contains smart buildings, e-mobility, energy management and data centers. The use of smart technologies and digitalization are encouraged by the United Nations as a way to help decarbonize cities around the world.

Gazprom, BASF cooperate on sulfur separation

Nov 4 – The Russian major Gazprom and the German chemical company BASF have agreed to devise a comprehensive solution for separation of sulfur from natural gas. The aim is to  enhance eco-efficiency of the Astrakhan gas processing plant and improve operational efficiency of BASF’s amine gas treatment units at the Orenburg gas-fired power plant.

Germany’s emission fall ‘markedly’

Nov 1 – Germany is headed for second consecutive year of substantial reductions in carbon emissions, amid a sharp drop in coal-burn in the power sector and an overall decline in energy use in 2019. If this trend continues, the country could get much closer to its 2020 climate target than widely anticipated.

Exmar to refinance Tango FLNG

Oct 31 – Exmar, the Belgian shipping company, is trying to refinance the Tango FLNG vessel, moored offshore Argentina on behalf of YPF. The aim is to generate around $60 million in additional capital, Exmar said, suggesting a deal will likely be struck in the first months of 2020.

Petronet doubles net profit

Oct 30 – Indian LNG importer Petronet has nearly doubled its net profits in the third quarter although revenues fell by 13%. Net profits came in at 1,089 crore rupees ($153.6m), an increase of 90% on the same period in 2018 as the company benefited from India’s lower corporate tax rates. Third-quarter revenues, in contrast, fell to 9,449 crore rupees ($1.33 billion).

Wildfires spread around LA

Oct 29 – Thousands of Los Angeles residents have been evacuated as wildfires spread fast around the metropolis and power outages brought life close to a standstill. The risk of fires caused by overland transmission lines prompted Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) to prolong precautionary blackouts that could last up to three days.

Dominion embraces solar & storage

Oct 28 – Dominion Energy South Carolina has signed contracts for more than 1,000 MW of solar capacity. About half of that capacity has entered service. To complement intermittent solar energy supply, Dominion earlier announced several energy storage projects.

Wärtsilä downgrades outlook for its energy business

Oct 25 – Wärtsilä has downgraded the outlook of its Energy Business from “soft” to “weak” amid low equipment demand, although the its services activity “remains sound.” The current order book for 2019 deliveries is 1,708 million Euros, comprised mainly of equipment deliveries, Wärtsilä stated today when posting mixed Q3 results. Looking ahead, the company said its operating result for full-year 2019 will be approximately 100 million Euros lower than in the 2018 result of 577 million Euros.

Siemens names new CIO

Oct 24 – Hanna Hennig will be appointed as new Chief Information Officer (CIO) at Siemens starting from January 2020. The change at Siemens’ IT organization supports the execution of the company’s Vision 2020+.

GE to service Austrian CHP

Oct 23 – Sappi Austria, provider of sustainable woodfibre products, has handed GE Power a multi-year service agreement to for its 42 MW onsite power plant.  GE will carry out a cross-fleet turbine and combustor upgrade to help Sappi reduce costs through a maintenance interval extension and better plant performance.

Brookfield invest $2bn in Cove Point LNG

Oct 22 – Brookfield Asset Management, an investor in energy infrastructure and power storage, has agreed to take a 25% stake in Cove Point LNG for just over $2 billion in cash. The alternative investor also owns assets in hydro (7.9 GW), wind (4.9 GW), solar (1.7 GW), distributed generation (400 MW) and energy storage (2.7 GW).

Ansaldo appoints new CEO

Oct 21 – Ansaldo Energia’s board of directors has appointed Giuseppe Marino as new CEO. Together with the chairman, Giuseppe Zampini, he will decide on the company’s strategy particularly relating to the new Chinese joint ventures.