The City of Alexandria in Louisiana, USA has contracted Wärtsilä to supply a gas-fired power plant for long-term supply of peaking power. The contract was signed in March 2014.
The new power plant will have an output of 60 MW from seven Wärtsilä 34SG engines running on natural gas. The project is an extension of the existing D.G. Hunter Generating Station.
“This expansion of our power plant will provide Alexandria citizens an efficient long-term power supply utilizing existing staff, facilities and partnerships,” Jacques M. Roy, Mayor of Alexandria, said. “These units will have the capability of powering critical infrastructure for the City in the event of a major grid failure due to storms or other natural disasters. The project will also ensure Alexandria remains diverse in fuel sources, while increasing insulation from unexpected changes in the power supply market.”
The City of Alexandria has recently become a part of MISO, the Midwest Independent System Operator, for the grid to which the City is connected. The efficient and flexible nature of the Wärtsilä engine technology enables fast response to peaks in demand with excellent load-following capabilities. The Wärtsilä units will be capable of reaching full load in just five minutes. Furthermore, with the generation of electricity located close to the consumer demand, transmission costs and efficiency losses are minimized.
The project reflects the growing trend towards flexible, fast-reacting generation that offers significant improvements in power system efficiency. Wärtsilä has a strong presence in North America with offices in 9 different locations. Currently, Wärtsilä engine technology is responsible for more than 6,800 MW of electricity output to domestic and industrial consumers at close to 240 power plants in North America and the Caribbean region.