Monthly Archives: julio 2018

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Europe added 4.5 GW of wind energy capacity in the first half of 2018, according to figures released by WindEurope. The figure is down on the same period last year (6.1 GW) though is in line with expectations.

There was 3.3 GW of onshore wind, driven by Germany (1.6 GW), France (605 MW) and Denmark (202 MW).
The 1.1 GW of offshore wind was mainly in the UK (911 MW), Belgium (175 MW) and Denmark (28 MW). Germany is set to install new offshore wind in the second half of the year.

For the whole of 2018, we expect to see 3.3 GW new offshore wind and 10.2 GW of onshore wind. This will mean 13.5 GW of new wind capacity in total for the year.

France has installed a lot of new onshore wind this year but they haven’t issued a single new permit for onshore wind permit in the last eight months because of an administrative issue – which has also resulted in their latest auction being under-subscribed. So there’ll be a drop-off in their new build now, creating uncertainty in the supply chain.

In Germany it’s good that projects now need a permit to bid into onshore auctions, but that rule now needs to be made permanent. Also, there’s no clarity yet on when the 4 GW new onshore wind promised in the coalition agreement for 2019-20 is going to be auctioned. And the new Government is slow in confirming the auction volumes beyond that. Like all Member States they now need to give five years’ visibility on future auction timetable and volumes – under the terms of the new Renewables Directive.

This visibility is key to the supply chain and to keep wind energy jobs and growth in Europe. Investments in manufacturing, skills and R&D only happen when governments give long-term visibility to the supply chain. This clarity helps them to make new investment decisions and bring down costs. Addressing these issues will be key to enable Europe to meet its target of 32% renewable energy by 2030 cost effectively.

And in offshore wind, Europe is too dependent on the UK, which is striding ahead in current installations and in committing to future volumes. By contrast, the rate of new installations has slowed down in Germany. Other countries also need to beef up and speed up their plans on offshore wind.

Source: WindEurope

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The European Investment Bank (EIB) is financing the innovation and development strategy that Velatia will drive forward in the electrical energy sector. EIB Vice-President Emma Navarro and Velatia’s CEO, Javier Ormazabal, today signed a EUR 32.5 million finance agreement that will enable the firm to incorporate new digital technologies into the products that it develops for electricity networks. The EU bank is providing this loan under the Investment Plan for Europe, known as the Juncker Plan.

Velatia is an industrial group that operates in two main areas: electricity distribution networks, via the firm Ormazabal, and telecommunications, headed by Ikusi. The EIB loan will enable the company, which is headquartered in Bilbao and has a presence in 19 countries, to improve its competitiveness in the face of the changes taking place in the energy sector. Ormazabal will drive forward projects in the areas of the automisation and digitisation of power grids, as well as the development of patents and products that enable it to enter new markets and gain new customers.

This EIB support for Ormazabal’s RDI programme will also have environmental benefits, helping to achieve the EU’s goal of decarbonising the energy system. Specifically, the project will make it possible to adapt the electricity distribution networks to a renewable and well-distributed energy mix and the electrification of transport. These aims will be achieved by developing technologies incorporating new electromechanical equipment and electronic hardware, communications systems provided with new cyber-security solutions and innovative power grid management software.

This agreement will help to safeguard quality employment and create new jobs in the firm’s RDI division. The loan is backed by the Investment Plan for Europe, which enables the EIB to finance projects that have particular value added and a higher risk profile owing to their structure or nature.

This loan makes clear the EIB’s firm commitment to supporting innovation by firms operating in highly competitive sectors that consequently need heavy investment to secure their future” said EIB Vice-President Emma Navarro at the signing ceremony. “We are therefore delighted to be signing an agreement that will benefit both the Spanish and the European economy by facilitating the development of new power sector products that will boost competitiveness and contribute to climate action”.

Our commitment to RDI is part of Velatia and of course Ormazabal’s DNA. We are facing different challenges that at the same time represent opportunities, and this is why we are committed to digitisation and sustainability as marks of our identity. The working areas in which Ormazabal is engaged are therefore energy efficiency and the development of technologies that enable achievement of the decarbonisation objectives set for Europe”, said Javier Ormazabal, Velatia’s CEO.

RDI financing

Innovation and skills development are fundamental ingredients for ensuring sustainable growth and quality job creation. Both play a key role in achieving long-term competitiveness. Financing innovation is therefore one of the EIB’s top priorities. In 2017, the EU bank provided EUR 13.8 billion for financing different RDI projects.

In Spain alone, last year the EIB supported the innovation projects of Spanish businesses with loans worth EUR 1.446 billion. This figure represents a 67% increase on its lending in this sector the previous year. Overall, the EIB Group dedicated 13% of its financing in Spain to promoting corporate RDI.

Source: European Investment Bank (EIB)

Photo: IEA, Getty Images)

The electricity sector attracted the largest share of energy investments in 2017, sustained by robust spending on grids, exceeding the oil and gas industry for the second year in row, as the energy sector moves toward greater electrification, according to the International Energy Agency’s latest review of global energy spending. Global energy investment totalled USD 1.8 trillion in 2017, a 2% decline in real terms from the previous year, according to the World Energy Investment 2018 report. More than USD 750 billion went to the electricity sector while USD 715 billion was spent on oil and gas supply globally.

State-backed investments are accounting for a rising share of global energy investment, as state-owned enterprises have remained more resilient in oil and gas and thermal power compared with private actors. The share of global energy investment driven by state-owned enterprises increased over the past five years to over 40% in 2017.

Meanwhile, government policies are playing a growing role in driving private spending. Across all power sector investments, more than 95% of investment is now based on regulation or contracts for remuneration, with a dwindling role for new projects based solely on revenues from variable pricing in competitive wholesale markets. Investment in energy efficiency is particularly linked to government policy, often through energy performance standards.

The report also finds that after several years of growth, combined global investment in renewables and energy efficiency declined by 3% in 2017 and there is a risk that it will slow further this year. For instance, investment in renewable power, which accounted for two-thirds of power generation spending, dropped 7% in 2017. Recent policy changes in China linked to support for the deployment of solar PV raise the risk of a slowdown in investment this year. As China accounts for more than 40% of global investment in solar PV, its policy changes have global implications.

While energy efficiency showed some of the strongest expansion in 2017, it was not enough to offset the decline in renewables. Moreover, efficiency investment growth has weakened in the past year as policy activity showed signs of slowing down.

The share of fossil fuels in energy supply investment rose last year for the first time since 2014, as spending in oil and gas increased modestly. Meanwhile, retirements of nuclear power plants exceeded new construction starts as investment in the sector declined to its lowest level in five years in 2017. The share of national oil companies in total oil and gas upstream investment remained near record highs, a trend expected to persist in 2018.

Though still a small part of the market, electric vehicles now account for much of the growth in global passenger vehicle sales, spurred by government purchase incentives. Nearly one quarter of the global value of EV sales in 2017 came from the budgets of governments, who are allocating more capital to support the sector each year.

Final investment decisions for coal power plants to be built in the coming years declined for a second straight year, reaching a third of their 2010 level. However, despite declining global capacity additions, and an elevated level of retirements of existing plants, the global coal fleet continued to expand in 2017, mostly due to markets in Asia. And while there was a shift towards more efficient plants, 60% of currently operating capacity uses inefficient subcritical technology.

The report finds that the prospects of the US shale industry are improving. Between 2010 and 2014, companies spent up to USD 1.8 for each dollar of revenue. However, the industry has almost halved its breakeven price, providing a more sustainable basis for future expansion. This underpins a record increase in US light tight oil production of 1.3 million barrels a day in 2018.

The improved prospects for the US shale sector contrast with the rest of the upstream oil and gas industry. Investment in conventional oil projects, which are responsible for the bulk of global supply, remains subdued. Investment in new conventional capacity is set to plunge in 2018 to about one-third of the total, a multi-year low raising concerns about the long-term adequacy of supply.

Source: IEA

As the rapid adoption of electric vehicles brings down battery costs, energy storage is coming online quickly. In new research, Embracing the Next Energy Revolution: Electricity Storage, Bain & Company estimates that large-scale battery storage could be cost competitive with peaking plants by 2025. This revolution will have tremendous implications across the electricity value chain. However, Bain finds early deployment of utility-scale energy storage will require new business models that create value in multiple ways – also known as value stacking.

Battery storage’s distinguishing characteristics – part generator, part wire and part ancillary service – are what make it revolutionary. As such, it needs to be considered an integrated offering by both utilities and regulators who would otherwise tend to regulate these historically discrete businesses separately. Storage is well positioned to become an integral tool for utilities in managing peak loads, regulating voltage and frequency, ensuring reliability from renewable generation, and creating a more flexible transmission and distribution system. For utility customers, storage can be a tool for reducing costs related to peak energy demand and helping meet sustainability goals by ensuring a more reliable flow of electricity from distributed renewable generation, namely solar.

Utilities can use batteries to store electricity during periods of low demand and then tap the stored electrons during peak periods to shave peak loads. Customers can do the same to offset electricity rates,” said Julian Critchlow, who leads Bain’s global Utilities Practice. “But until costs come down, leaders in energy storage will need to explore ways to stack value on top of peak shaving.”

Bain suggests utilities adjust their operating models to take better advantage of the opportunities from storage and other technological developments in the electricity system. For example, as energy storage shaves peaks and flattens the load curve, utilities may be able to forego some investments in peaking capacity and defer investments in transmission and distribution infrastructure. In this way, storage not only becomes a tool to meet system needs but can also reduce system costs as it pushes unnecessary capacity and waste out of the system.

Additional opportunities may come from new business models related to value stacking. To make the most of these, utilities will need to think creatively about ways to partner with commercial and industrial customers:

• A large commercial customer running a fleet of electric vehicles may for efficiency choose to deploy an array of large batteries at a garage where vehicles are parked and recharged in the evening. This electricity storage asset may be available for use by the utility during times when the vehicles are fully charged or on the road.
• Similarly, a company with large data centers may invest in battery storage to ensure a reliable supply of electricity, but may allow the utility to tap those resources when the data center doesn’t require them. Deals like these will require some new muscles within utilities, since most are not accustomed to managing these types of partnerships.

Central to all of these efforts is enhancing utilities’ IT capabilities, particularly mastery over advanced data analytics. Increasingly, they will require better visibility of supply, demand, and voltage and frequency needs as customers and regulators demand more from utilities.

Along with new opportunities, however, energy storage also brings added challenges and complexities, such as integration into strategic plans, investment decisions, or regulatory priorities. Although vertically integrated or regulated transmission and distribution utilities may have the best integrated view of the need for storage, regulators are concerned that utility participation could dominate or stifle the market.

As energy storage costs continue to decline, new business models that integrate a wide range of value streams together will unlock its potential,” said Aaron Denman, a partner in Bain’s Utilities Practice. “Energy storage has the potential to transform the entire electricity value chain, but in order to capture the opportunities at hand, utility executives need to move quickly and aggressively.

For utility executives assessing the energy storage opportunity, the first step is defining the role of energy storage and related services within the strategic plan. Executives should also continue to work to shape their regulatory environments including performance-based incentives that encourage the deployment of storage to improve reliability, resilience and safety while lowering system costs.

Source: Bain & Company

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In recent years, increasing pressure to drive down wind turbine manufacturing prices has spurred enormous advances in technology. For example, turbine and rotor sizes have grown at an impressive speed, and many other innovations have enabled significant improvements in terms of energy output and cost efficiency. The introduction of auction systems for tendering onshore and offshore projects in a growing number of countries around the world has contributed to intensifying international competition, resulting in substantial (project) lifecycle-based price drops and huge value-chain cost reduction pressure.

At the Global Wind Summit in Hamburg, the industry will demonstrate and discuss what can be achieved by current and emerging technologies. From 25 to 28 September WindEnergy Hamburg, the world’s leading expo for the onshore and offshore wind industry will open its gates, featuring 1,400 exhibitors from around the world. In parallel, WindEurope will hold its global conference at the Hamburg Messe site.

A crucial factor enabling cost reductions is the growing trend towards industrial-scale series production. As a consequence, existing supply chains are used more extensively, product development costs drop, and the technology and overall risk profile becomes more favourable. The ongoing cost reduction pressure affects hardware suppliers, project developers, financial and legal consultants, and other parties, forcing them to find the most cost-effective solutions to present in auctions and project tenders.

In several key renewable energy markets, including Germany and India, onshore wind and solar increasingly compete for the lowest prices in auction system tendering rounds. For example, the winning prices in India’s first federal (onshore) auction, which totalled 2 GW, were as low as US$ 0.038/kWh. By comparison, solar tariff bids in India fell to a level of just INR 2.97/kWh this year. The Dutch auction system successfully concluded its first non-subsidised offshore wind tender for the 700-750 MW Hollandse Kust I & II project earlier this year. The tender winner, the Swedish utility and WindEnergy Hamburg exhibitor Vattenfall, will build the wind farm with ‘non-decided’ 6-12 MW turbines, and the project should be completed by 2022. Leading offshore turbine and main component suppliers in Hamburg will inform visitors on features and benefits of current product offerings and their competitive advantages in auction scenarios.

Market-specific products

An increasingly common wind industry strategy are modular platforms with flexible ratings, plus multiple rotor sizes and various available hub heights (onshore) to optimally match specific market and geographical conditions. Mean wind speed is a key product driver and a main variable for right configurations in achieving maximum cost effectiveness performance. GE Renewable Energy for example offers a 2 MW platform with flexible ratings between 2 – 2.7 MW and 116-m rotor size, and in 2.2 – 2.5 MW plus 127 m. They and other suppliers will explain visitors on the features and benefits of turbine platforms with high configuration flexibility.

Local production facilities

Localisation of production is another key topic on the agenda of the wind industry, and increasingly a binding requirement in many (emerging) wind markets. India is a typical low-wind market and the second largest in Asia. The WindEnergy Hamburg exhibitors GE, Nordex Acciona, Senvion, Siemens Gamesa, Vestas all manufacture their 2 MW+ low and medium-wind models in-country, which has a favourable impact on turbine CAPEX and thus on the overall project cost-effectiveness. The typical specific power ratings of these products in the 175 – 205 W/m2 range aim at boosting annual yield, thereby contributing to higher asset long-term cost-effectiveness. The Nordex Acciona 3 MW AW3000 series is the most powerful turbine produced in the country, with the latest current flagship model for auctions, the AW140/3000 featuring a 140-metre rotor diameter (195 W/m2). Enercon announced its re-entry into the Indian market with a 3.5 MW EP3 model boasting a 138-metre rotor diameter. The first turbines are expected to be erected in early 2020.

Components custom-tailored to the specific requirements of local markets are another key to unlock additional saving potential. For example, the Argentinian government intends to install 6-7 GW of onshore wind power by 2025. This means that the country is poised to become Latin America’s second largest wind market in the coming years. As in other Latin American countries, the product-market focus rapidly shifts to 3MW and the largest 4-5 MW models. Several WindEnergy Hamburg exhibitors have concrete objectives for this emerging fast-growth market.

Known current bottlenecks include an inadequate port infrastructure and the unavailability of suitable special cranes which are needed because of the very high mean wind speeds of up to 12 m/s in the country’s South. To avoid costly downtime during installation because of weather, Enercon will employ innovative climbing crane and bolted-steel tower technology in Argentina which it recently acquired after buying the Dutch company Lagerwey. Furthermore, Enercon will introduce the new 4 MW E-126 EP3 in the country.

Another example of new materials and methods in focus for mature as well as emerging onshore markets is the use of concrete towers in Brazil due to high steel prices in the country. German exhibitor Max Bögl Wind has for many years supplied its proprietary concrete-and-steel hybrid towers with hub heights of up to 180m, especially for low-wind projects in Germany. The cost-effective use of high towers raises yields by 0.75 – 1% for each extra metre added, thanks to stronger and more stable wind speeds at greater heights. The company introduced its high-rise towers to the US earlier this year and already produces them in Thailand using a pre-fabricated mobile factory for the first time which the company developed in-house.

WindEnergy Hamburg and Husum Wind

The world of wind energy gathers in Hamburg for the Global Wind Summit every two years.

The Global Wind Summit will be held in Hamburg, the capital of the wind industry, from 25 to 28 September 2018. At WindEnergy Hamburg, roughly 1400 exhibitors from around the world will present their product innovations and projects. The world’s leading wind industry expo for the onshore and offshore wind industry mirrors the global market and its entire value chain.

In parallel, WindEurope will hold the Global Onshore and Offshore Conference in the halls of Hamburg Messe. In several sessions at the global WindEurope conference in Hamburg, industry visitors will learn more about how to compete successfully in auction-driven markets. The third day of the conference will feature workshops and lectures on topics such as “Designing auctions: What we have learned and where we should go”, or “Risk mitigation in a merchant world” and “Under pressure? The impacts of LCOE reductions on the supply chain”.

Source: Hamburg Messe

The organisers of the Global Power & Energy Exhibition (GPEX) have announced a partnership with the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE).

With major changes in the political and corporate landscapes, the energy and power industries face challenges in shifting towards a digitalised, low-carbon energy system. To drive the sector’s transformation, renewable energy generation technology needs to be improved and new projects encouraged through effective regulation and policies and needed public and private finance. Energy and power infrastructure need to be modernised and adapted to cleaner energy sources to improve efficiency throughout the system and thereby avoid unnecessary waste. Businesses around the world are under increasing pressure to reduce emissions and transition to a low carbon economy.

The Global Power & Energy Exhibition (GPEX) will be held on 17-20 September 2018 at the Fira Gran Via in Barcelona, alongside the world-leading gas and LNG event Gastech. GPEX will be gathering international stakeholders from the energy and the power sector to discuss concrete ways of shifting to a clean and modern energy system. With a high-level programme and senior decision-makers within leading industry corporations and new disruptors, learning opportunities will be numerous, and enhanced networking will allow the creation of new partnerships.

As one of UNECE’s core areas of focus is sustainable energy, Scott Foster, the Director of the Sustainable Energy Division of UNECE, will speak at the GPEX Leaders’ Summit on 17 September 2018 on multisectoral collaboration driving the global energy transition.

Through its partnership with UNECE, GPEX will ensure the best industry experts attend the event and take active part in the conversations. Industry leaders attending GPEX are also invited to attend the Ninth International Forum on Energy for Sustainable Development, organised by UNECE in Kiev on 12-15 November 2018.

Join UNECE at GPEX next September in Barcelona! Register now

Source: dmg events

A consortium comprising EPC contractor TSK and Rolls-Royce has signed an engineering, procurement and construction (“EPC”) contract with Prime Energía Quickstart Spa, a subsidiary of Prime Energia SpA (“Prime Energía”), for the construction of five power plants across Chile consisting of 265 MTU Onsite Energy 16V 4000 gensets. Prime Energía is a subsidiary of the New York-based Glenfarne Group, LLC (“Glenfarne”), a developer, owner-operator and industrial manager of energy and infrastructure assets. Prime Energía’s five power plants will offer a total combined capacity of 475 MW, which will be connected to Chile’s electricity grid to provide backup capacity to the country’s power supply system.

These power plants are an integral part of Glenfarne’s strategy to develop power infrastructure that supports the proliferation of renewables and the stability of the grid in regions across the Americas with great potential for growth.

The order to deliver the power plants to the first three locations has been officially placed with the consortium, with the order for the two additional plants scheduled to follow shortly thereafter. The gensets will be digitally connected via gateways sending data to the MTU GoManage platform to monitor and analyse system data. The power plants will be remotely monitored and controlled in real time by Prime Energía’s state of the art Network Operations Center in Santiago.

Chile is one of the fastest growing economic powers in Latin America. Demand for energy is expected to grow at an annual rate of 4 per cent over the next 5 years, and the country expects to benefit from the vast availability of renewable power sources. The percentage of renewable energy in the Chilean power mix is growing at a constant rate: its share, in terms of installed generation capacity, has more than tripled since 2012, and in 2017, with a total plant capacity of around 4,300 MW, was approximately 18 per cent. By 2035, no less than 60 per cent of the country’s electricity is expected to be produced from renewable energy, increasing to 70 per cent by 2050. As Chile increases its reliance on weather variable renewable energy sources, there will be an increased requirement for fast-response, cost-competitive backup power sources such as the power plants in Prime Energía’s portfolio to stabilise the electricity grid.

Source: Rolls Royce

Acciona and Tuto Energy (Biofields Group), owners of the Puerto Libertad photovoltaic complex in Sonora (Mexico) with a 50% stake each, have signed a financing agreement for the 404-MWp plant with four banks –North American Development Bank (NADB), Banco Nacional de Obras y Servicios of Mexico (BANOBRAS), Instituto de Crédito Oficial of Spain (ICO) and Banco Sabadell– for up to US$264 million (€226 million at current exchange rates). The project finance is being underwritten on an equal basis by the four entities, with a repayment term of 18 years.

Construction work on the complex, one of the biggest in Latin America, began in February this year and it is expected to be fully operational in the first trimester of 2019.

Electricity for three uses

Part of the production from Puerto Libertad (229 MWp) will cover supplies to the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) amounting to 478.3 GWh of electric power and the corresponding clean energy certificates awarded to the project consortium in the second long-term electricity supply auction held in Mexico.

114 MWp will be used to service a private electricity purchase-and-sale contract, and the remaining 61 MWp will be allocated to marketing energy in the wholesale electricity market.

The Puerto Libertad plant will be equipped with 1,222,800 polycrystalline silicon panels mounted on horizontal tracking structures.

With a total solar capture surface area of 2.4 km2 it will produce 963 GWh of power per year, capable of covering the electricity demand of 583,000 Mexican homes.

Given its renewable origin, this production will avoid the emission of 925,443 tonnes of CO2 to the atmosphere from coal-fired power stations, with a purifying effect on the atmosphere equivalent to more than 46 million trees.

An average of 500 people will work on the construction of the plant, and this figure will rise to 900 at times of peak activity. In the operational phase, the facility will provide stable employment for 38 people.

Source: Acciona

Daimler Buses’ and Akasol’s long-term cooperation for the development and mass-production of battery systems for the electric bus eCitaro is going from strength to strength. In autumn, serial production of the first-generation battery system Akasystem OEM will begin in Langen (Hesse, Germany) as planned. Meanwhile, Akasol is starting to develop second-generation lithium-ion battery systems in close cooperation with Daimler Buses. These will offer about 35 percent more energy and contribute to an improved range in 2020.

Instead of currently 25 kWh storage capacity per battery pack, the second generation will be able to store 33 kWh per battery pack. This means an increase of 35 percent from 243 to 330 kWh per vehicle while maintaining the same constructed space, weight and upwards compatibility. This is made possible thanks to the unique, flexible system architecture that Akasol offers its clients. According to Daimler Buses this technology leap, in conjunction with other factors, contributes to an increase of the vehicle’s range to approximately 200 km (SORT2 cycles, medium traffic) and up to 250 km when operating under ideal circumstances.

The lithium-ion battery systems of both generations are able to charge rapidly (at up to 300 kW) and supply energy to additional units such as air conditioning and electrical systems. The key factor for providing robustness and durability is Akasol’s efficient water-cooling which guarantees stable tempering at 25 ºC and allows battery-run buses to operate in all climates. The high-performance battery systems are partly mounted on the roof, partly in the rear.

Akasol has developed and distributed a variety of battery systems for electric and hybrid electric buses for many years. In addition to EvoBus, one of Akasol’s clients of series produced battery systems for buses, buses using Akasol’s innovative battery technology are in daily operation in London, Berlin, Cologne and Braunschweig amongst others.

Source: Akasol

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MAN Energy Solutions has won the order from Oman Liquefied Natural Gas LLC (Oman LNG) to equip a new power plant with nine MAN 51/60 gas engines. The power plant will be located in Qalhat, southeast of Muscat on the Gulf of Oman, and will provide 120 MW of power to the existing LNG facility of Oman LNG. It will replace an existing gas-turbine plant. In fact, this market segment has been completely dominated by gas turbines in the past, so this is a pioneering installation that will show MAN 51/60 gas engine is the ideal fit for this application.

The new power plant needs to be capable of using a variety of differing gas compositions and methane numbers with limited gas conditioning or blending. To master this, MAN Energy Solutions has developed control strategies to ensure that the engines adapt to the prevailing gas configuration in real time for optimum performance.

As fuel, the new plant uses gases derived from the liquefaction process, which can contain high inert components in the fuel and, therefore, may have much lower calorific values. Thanks to their customized design, the engines will nevertheless be able to provide the required power, even at ambient temperatures of up to 48 °C.

Compared to the existing plant, MAN engines will significantly reduce fuel consumption and GHG emissions of Oman LNG’s Power Plant , while the modular-design approach guarantees top-of-the-line overall availability.

Source: MAN Energy Solutions