Siemens: Egyptian Mega-deal – Largest order in the company’s history
In 2015, the Zohr gas field was discovered, approximately 190 km away from the Egyptian coast. With an area of 100 square kilometres and an estimated gas volume of over 800 billion cubic metres, it is the largest gas field yet discovered in the Mediterranean region. It is estimated that it could cover Egypt’s gas requirements for over 15 years.
However, the north-east African country does not have enough power stations to meet the high energy requirements of the rapidly-growing population and ensure black-out free production in the factories. This situation is set to change as the Egyptian Government has given the green light to plans that will ensure power supply in the future, through the comprehensive expansion of power generation capacity.
Expansion of energy capacity by more than 50 per cent
This is an undertaking for which they wish to gradually take on board competent European corporate partners – including the intelligence and experience of technology group Siemens.
In June 2015, during the visit of the Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi to Germany, Siemens signed the largest individual order in the company’s history. For a total of around 8 billion euros, the German company must undertake to expand Egypt’s energy production by more than 50 per cent by 2018, compared with the present installed capacity. The order includes the construction of three combined gas/steam turbine [CCGT] power stations and twelve wind-power installations, consisting of 600 wind generators with rotors. These will be constructed both near the Gulf of Suez and in the western Nile region.
High degree of efficiency due to CCGT technology
In order to achieve a higher degree of energy efficiency in the gas power station installations compared with, e.g. conventionally-fired steam power stations, Siemens decided to employ the principle of combined gas and steam power stations [CCGT power stations] fuelled with natural gas. This solution involves a gas turbine being used as a heat source for a waste heat boiler [WHB] installed downstream, which is used to generate steam for a steam turbine. This combination enables very efficient fuel utilisation, so that approximately 60 per cent of the input energy can be converted into electrical power. As a comparison: in traditional thermal power stations, the efficiency is usually a maximum of 35-40 per cent. Furthermore, CCGT power stations offer relatively short construction periods, and possess a very high degree of operating flexibility.
Chief requirement is maximum plant availability
The auxiliary equipment of the power stations includes very sophisticated control technology, and information and data processing facilities. These have the task of controlling and regulating various process-critical sectors.
They therefore need a dependable power supply, fully independent of the public power grid, preferably with battery-backed resources. Otherwise there is a threat of service interruptions, causing considerable financial losses – from damage to the instrumentation used in the power station (measurement recorders, sensors, etc.) through to damage to capital equipment in the turbine power-train (motors, pumps, etc.).
To prevent these scenarios, Siemens, immediately after receiving the order, sought a business partner possessing wide experience in the development and installation of reliable, high-availability power supply systems.
Requirements that BENNING is eminently capable of fulfilling - with experience spanning over 50 years in developing and producing DC power supplies for conventional and nuclear power stations. Due to the company’s wealth of experience and history as a partner to Siemens in the gas and power station, BENNING was invited to submit an offer.
The actual order was then awarded via an online auction, in which BENNING was able to win against numerous competitors.
Delivery of 110 power supply systems
BENNING is delivering to Siemens a total of 110 AC and DC power supply systems, excellently suited to coping with failure-free emergency power supply under all the necessary load conditions of a power station. In the past, they have all proved to be exceptionally reliable and very economical systems. They include 56 rectifier systems in the robust “THYROTRONIC” industrial rectifier range. Then there are 4 three-phase power inverters from the INVERTRONIC range, and 48 TEBECHOP DC converters that are known for their high efficiency and short MTTR (Mean Time To Repair).
In addition, they offer a possibility for carrying out an initial internal intervention directly on-site. All the above-mentioned power supply systems are designed to ensure that the three CCGT power stations at the Al Burullus, Beni Suef and New Capital sites will operate without trouble for many years.
Among other things, the power supply systems are responsible for safeguarding the instrumentation technology or various other operation-critical processes – for example, the functionality of the pumps that lubricate the turbine bearings. If a turbine stops working due to a power failure, it still continues to rotate for some time. However, if no oil is pumped in during that period, the oil film will break down, causing enormously costly bearing damage. In this case, a permanently available emergency pump ensures the crucial lubrication of the bearings.
Project completion planned for March 2017
Delivery of the systems commenced in February this year, i.e. just a year after signature of the co-operation agreement. BENNING began the technical planning in mid-2015 – with a lead-time of around 2-3 months.
Project completion is planned for March 2017. From that date, on completion of the final stage, all 110 systems must play their part in supplying an additional 14.4 gigawatt into the Egyptian power grid from the three new CCGT power stations.
This would mean a major step towards achieving the goal set by the Egyptian Government: to increase Egypt’s energy capacity by over 50 per cent.
contact: Ulrich Borkers
telephone: +49 2871 / 93 389