General Electric (GE) is expecting to finish refurbishing work on 1,000 megawatts of Mangla hydropower plants within the next five years to bring a 35 percent increase in the station’s production capacity, the company’s executive said.
Sarim Sheikh, chief executive officer of GE Pakistan, Iran and Afghanistan said the station’s refurbishing would be completed by 2023 with a cost of around Rs15 billion. “After completion, the plants would be able to generate 35 percent more electricity using same amount of water.”
The project is jointly funded by a French development agency and the United States Agency for International Development.
The project is a major component of the Water and Power Development Authority’s (Wapda) plan of adding low-cost hydropower generation to overcome shortage of electricity and maximise share of hydropower in electricity grid.
Mangla power station, located in Kashmir, has an installed capacity of 1,000MW. The existing station has 10 generating units, having capacity of 100MW each with a useful life of 30 years extendable up to 35 years.
The first unit was commissioned in 1967. All units at Mangla have efficiently been working and generating electricity since then in accordance with their installed capacity despite completion of their useful life long ago.
The Wapda planned to refurbish the existing Mangla hydropower station to benefit from additional 2.88 million acres feet of water and 40 feet additional water head available with completion of Mangla dam raising project in 2009.
Sheikh said the modern technology is being used to optimise generation capacity of Mangla hydropower station. “The quantum of water, which generates 1,000MW, will be sufficient to generate over 1,300MW.”
He said GE is expanding its footprints in hydropower, coal, gas and renewable generation across the country. GE is expected to power 40 percent of the country’s overall electricity generation by 2019.
“Pakistan’s generation capacity will stand at around 35,000MW by 2019; of which 14,000MW would be generated through GE equipment,” the company’s executive added.
On regasified liquefied natural gas- (RLNG) fired power plants, Sheikh said Haveli Bahadurshah and Bhikki plants have achieved their commissioning following rigorous testing while the Balloki plant would shortly be commissioned.
“The gas-run power plants are most cost effective power generation plants in the country and would add 3,600MW into the system,” he added. “There are some teething problems, but now the plants are operating at full capacity.”
Article Source: The News