Power ships: a real solution to South Africa’s short-term energy needs

  A set of cost-effective privately owned and operated floating power stations, moored at a number of South African harbours, would provide much needed electricity to the country and would remove the need for most of the loadshedding currently being experienced. These floating power stations are known as power ships (Fig. 1).     Having […]

Recent developments in storage technology and applications

  Electrical energy storage systems (ESS) are becoming increasingly important in both the renewable energy and the smart grid sectors, as more operators are realising that without ESS it will be difficult to progress forward. Although it was regarded in the past as too expensive, storage is now seen to be an essential economic solution […]

Utilities reduce costs and boost efficiency with gas

  Distributed generation has gained favour as utilities seek cost-effective ways to keep up with rising demand for power. The concept helps forestall construction of costly centralised power plants, and power used near the point of production limits stress on distribution and transmission systems. Natural-gas-fueled reciprocating engine-generators have served well in distributed generation service, delivering […]

The potential for IPP coal fired power generation in South Africa

  The DoE has issued a request for qualification (RFQ) and proposals for new generation capacity under the coal base-load IPP procurement programme. The request does not mention plant size but stipulates both pulverised coal and fluidised bed systems. The proposed plant will be of a much smaller scale than the existing mega-projects under construction […]

The nuclear nexus: Is flexible operation the way of the future?

  The general view on nuclear power plant is that it is rigid and inflexible in output and is only suitable for baseload operation. This is not correct, and nuclear power plants can operate flexibly, within ranges and ramp rates comparable to other generation technologies. This makes nuclear a good candidate as a carbon free […]

Safer, cheaper nuclear: The simple molten salt reactor

  Nuclear energy has become cursed by high capital costs which generally make it uncompetitive with fossil fuel for electricity generation. To a substantial extent these high costs are a response to additional safety and containment systems which have been mandated since the Chernobyl and Fuskushima disasters. If nuclear energy is to have a transformative […]

Evaluating energy efficiency on a coal power plant’s performance

  Eskom has embarked on energy efficiency initiatives on its coal boiler plants in a bid to decrease the amount of coal burnt and in turn increase the electricity generated. This study focused on the analysis of the before and after outage data obtained from the unit cards in one of the Eskom’s “once through” […]