Highlighting its growing portfolio of solutions to help support the long-term role of Poland’s coal-fired power plants in Europe’s energy mix, GE’s Power Services business recently announced it will modernize one of three Zamech-made turbine-generator sets at Veolia Energia Poznań ZEC SA, a 275-megawatt (MW) district-heating plant. GE gained global capabilities to service non-GE supplied steam turbine equipment through its acquisition of Alstom Power’s thermal services business in November 2015.
“We are pleased to select GE to help us increase the efficiency and output of our steam turbines,” said Jan Pic, member of the board and operational director of Veolia Energia Poznań ZEC. “This project will help the station operate more efficiently, as we want to strengthen our position in a very competitive environment.”
The Veolia Energia Poznań station features one, 65-MW Zamech unit and two, 105-MW Zamech units. GE plans to increase Unit 3’s output by up to 6 MW (the extra power will be sent to the local grid) and also improve turbine efficiency by up to 6 percent. Additionally, to improve the turbine’s operational flexibility, during periods when there is no demand for electrical power, the operator will be able to disconnect the low-pressure (LP) part of the steam turbine while it is in full district-heating mode. This will allow the operator to use thermal power for the preheating of district-heating water only.
“When GE acquired Alstom Power’s technology portfolio in 2015, it absorbed the ability to service generation equipment from other manufacturers, including the Zamech turbines installed at the Veolia Energia Poznań station,” said Pascal Schweitzer, general manager of GE’s Power Services business in Europe. ”Our coal business is well-positioned to respond to future energy needs. We have one of the highest-efficiency, lowest-emissions technologies—coupled with our digital solutions—and we are excited to help position Veolia to remain competitive and ‘win’ with its existing fleet.”
Veolia in Poland, which is one of the leading providers of services in the areas of energy, water and wastewater as well as waste management, present in 74 towns and cities including Warsaw, Łódź and Poznań. The company is the largest private operator of district heating networks across the country. It also is Poland’s third largest cogeneration plant operator.
For the past 15 years, GE has maintained and serviced Veolia’s steam turbines to provide cost-effective performance improvements. During this time, GE has performed numerous major inspections and modernizations of the facility’s generating equipment.
The steam turbine modernization outage at the Veolia Energia Poznań station is expected to start in May 2017, and the commissioning of the upgraded equipment is scheduled for August 2017.