Zesa starts spruc­ing up ther­mal power sta­tions

Sunday News (Zimbabwe) - - Front Page -

THE re-pow­er­ing of Harare and Bu­l­awayo ther­mal power sta­tions, which is ex­pected to add 150 megawatts (MW), is set to be­gin be­fore year-end af­ter two ma­jor fi­nanciers made the $265 mil­lion fund­ing for the project read­ily avail­able.

Re-pow­er­ing tech­nol­ogy with in­volves re­plac­ing

new. Zim­babwe

old Power Com­pany (ZPC) — Zesa’s power gen­er­at­ing unit — last week said work on the 77-year-old Harare Power Sta­tion (HPS), which has se­cured fund­ing from Afrex­im­bank, will be­gin be­fore June. Ten­der­ing for Bu­l­awayo Power Sta­tion (BPS) has since be­gun with pre-qual­i­fi­ca­tion in India as the project is be­ing spon­sored by Ex­im­bank of India.

The two plants — cur­rently pro­duc­ing about 37MW — are set to gen­er­ate 150MW once the re-pow­er­ing ex­er­cise is com­pleted in 2021. ZPC act­ing man­ag­ing direc­tor En­gi­neer Rob­son Chikuri said the re­fur­bish­ment ex­er­cise in­volves up­dat­ing the tech­nol­ogy used in the plants.

“Money has been se­cured through a fa­cil­ity from Afrex­im­bank for Harare (ther­mal sta­tion) re-pow­er­ing. A line of credit fa­cil­ity has been se­cured from Ex­im­bank of India to­wards the re­fur­bish­ment of Bu­l­awayo Power Sta­tion,” said Eng Chikuri.

“Both Harare and Bu­l­awayo Power Sta­tions will take 24 months to im­ple­ment. Harare Project al­ready has a con­tract in place and, there­fore, com­mence­ment is ex­pected be­fore the sec­ond quar­ter of 2019,” he said.

HPS is en­vis­aged to con­trib­ute 60MW to the grid, while BPS, which was com­mis­sioned be­tween 1947 and 1957, will weigh in with 90MW. Eng Chikuri said the new tech­nol­ogy that will be used by the spruced-up plants will also be environment friendly.

“The boiler tech­nol­ogy that will be em­ployed in both projects is the flu­idised bed com­bus­tion tech­nol­ogy. This tech­nol­ogy can use low-grade coal, thus, coal of high ash con­tent/ low calorific value may be used in the boil­ers. The boil­ers also have min­i­mal to nil emis­sion of sul­phur and ni­tro­gen ox­ides into the at­mos­phere, thus, are very friendly to the at­mos­phere, mak­ing them suitable for the ur­ban environment that the two projects are sit­u­ated,” he said.

Zim­babwe is driv­ing to­wards en­ergy self-suf­fi­ciency af­ter Pres­i­dent Em­mer­son Mnan­gagwa com­mis­sioned Kariba South Power Sta­tion extension project in March 2018, which added 300MW to the grid. The coun­try plans to gen­er­ate enough en­ergy to drive lo­cal eco­nomic growth and ex­port ex­cess power.

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