Kenya Electricity Generating Company PLC (KenGen), a leading power producer, has begun installing a Steam Turbine into the Olkaria 1 AU 6 Power Plant.
The Steam Turbine is the component that is usually rotated to move the generator that produces electricity.
According to Mrs Rebecca Miano, KenGen Managing Director and CEO, the turbine’s lower casing installation started this Thursday.
She said this is the largest single unit of turbine installed with a capacity of 83.3MW. KenGen was now in the final phase of constructing the power plant.
She said this was the first time a Fuji Turbine was being installed in Kenya and Africa.
KenGen to be assisted by Fuji Electric
Fuji Electric, the Turbine Manufacturer, has a technical adviser who will oversee the whole installation process, assisted by engineers from both firms.
The turbine installation and its parts will take about three months, including dynamic balancing. This Installation will run alongside other significant facilities such as Generator Step-Up Transformer (GSUT), Auxiliary transformers, MV and LV Switchgears, Non-Condensable Gas extraction system, Cooling water system, Air Compressor system, Heating and Ventilation system and Emergency Diesel Generator.
Mrs Miano said the project is on schedule despite challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. “With these activities running concurrently, it will ensure that the power plant’s commissioning is achieved in the last quarter of the year 2021,” she added.
In January this year, a team of 15 engineers and experts in heavy lifting successfully mounted a generator weighing 99 tonnes (99,000 kilograms) onto the power plant’s Steam Turbine in Olkaria, Naivasha.
Upon completion, the power plant will generate 83.3MW of electricity injected into the national grid.
The KSh 600 Million generator was manufactured by the Japanese Fuji Electric and took five days to be transported from Mombasa to Olkaria due to its colossal size.
Construction of the Olkaria 1 AU 6 geothermal power plant began in December 2018 following a ground-breaking ceremony by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
Figures indicate that KenGen supplies over 72% of electricity in Kenya, with renewable sources accounting for 80% of this supply.
KenGen has a total installed generation capacity of 1,818MW comprising hydro (826MW), geothermal (713MW), thermal (254MW) and wind (26MW).