South Australia now has access to an additional 276 MW of electricity generation, with the state’s new power plant installed in time for the warmer summer months.
The new GE TM2500 aero derivative turbines have been connected to the grid at two locations – the former General Motors Holden site at Elizabeth and the Adelaide Desalination Plant at Lonsdale.
The turbines have passed necessary testing requirements and are ready to despatch electricity to the grid to help avoid supply shortfalls.
The power plant, supplied by APR Energy, will operate on diesel fuel over the next two summers, before being relocated to a permanent location as a State-owned power plant operating on gas.
The plant is cleaner than the former Northern Power Station, and once operating on gas, will be cleaner and more efficient than Torrens Island Power Station.
This summer, the power plant will be complemented by the world’s largest lithium ion battery and new ministerial powers of direction.
On February 8 this year, 90,000 South Australian households lost power because the market operator decided to switch off homes, rather than switch on available generation.
The State Government’s energy plan, South Australian Power for South Australians, included plans for a state-owned power plant, to ensure South Australians have access to additional generation during times of electricity supply shortfall.
There were 31 expressions of interest from a dozen countries, including Australia, China, Malaysia, Singapore, France, Finland, Spain and the United Kingdom.
APR Energy’s bid was selected following a competitive tendering process conducted by SA Power Networks.