Nigeria Deploys GE's Mobile Gas Turbines, Bringing Financing Services to Return Largest Refinery to Full Power and Production Capacity
With more industrial facilities using distributed power technologies to ensure a reliable energy supply and increase productivity, GE’s Distributed Power business (NYSE: GE) is supplying Genesis Electricity’s driven project company, GEL Utility Limited, with three 25-megawatt (MW), trailer-mounted, TM2500+ aeroderivative gas turbines to generate uninterrupted power at Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation’s (NNPC) state oil refinery at Port Harcourt, Nigeria.
The installation by GEL Utility Limited of GE’s mobile gas turbines at the Port Harcourt Refining Company (PHRC) facility will ensure the country’s largest oil refinery has the power it needs to overcome chronic grid outages and return to full capacity for refining. Up to now, grid outages have reduced PHRC’s output to 30 percent of its total maximum capacity of 210,000 barrels per day. The outages and other factors have forced Nigeria to import large volumes of refined petroleum products to meet its domestic needs.
To help address these issues, Genesis Electricity Limited, an independent power producer and one of the owners of GEL Utility Limited, signed a 20-year power purchase agreement with NNPC in November 2013 for the installation of GE’s TM2500+ units at the 49-year-old refinery. The TM2500+ gas turbines will provide both the baseload and backup power to support refinery operations. The agreement also includes the future modernization of Nigeria’s other two refineries.
GE, through its Sales & Project Finance (S&PF) group, acted as a catalyst and differentiator to take the project post execution of the power purchase agreement with NNPC to financial close. GE S&PF worked with GEL Utility Ltd, Genesis, Engro Powergen Ltd. (one of the equity holders) and other project participants to structure and arrange the project’s equity, senior and sub-debt. It is the first-ever non-recourse project financing for power plants in Nigeria.
“We are excited to work with GE to deploy their proven TM2500+ gas turbine technology and help Nigeria successfully return the Port Harcourt refinery to full service as quickly as possible,” said Akinwole Omoboriowo II, CEO of Genesis Electricity Limited. “This project was not only important in getting the refinery back into full operation, but also to support Nigeria’s long-term economic interests by achieving optimum refining capacity.”
The three TM2500+ units will enter commercial operation in August 2014, giving PHRC the power it needs to return to full capacity. As a result, Nigeria will be able to drastically reduce its use of imported refined fuel products.
“Our TM2500+ technology’s high-power density and compact footprint make it the perfect solution to address Port Harcourt Refining Company’s fast ramp-up, on-site power requirements while also ensuring the refinery’s long-term viability,” said Lorraine Bolsinger, president and CEO of GE’s Distributed Power business.
In support of local content requirements and reflecting GE’s long-term commitment to promoting workforce development opportunities in countries where the company operates, GE is training local engineers to operate and manage the refinery’s TM2500+ units and also has an in-country service and maintenance workshop to service the units.
GE’s TM2500+ gas turbine is capable of providing ISO-rated 31 MW of fast and reliable on-site generating capacity. The system can be used to provide utilities with a “baseload bridge” to support permanent power installations; backup power to support natural disaster relief efforts; or for plant shutdowns or equipment maintenance. The fuel-flexible system can use either natural gas or liquid-distillate.
“The PHRC refinery project represents GE’s second TM2500+ order in Nigeria. Both projects have been for oil and gas industry projects, illustrating how GE’s distributed power technologies as well as sales and project financing capabilities can help Nigeria and other countries more effectively utilize their domestic energy resources,” said George Njenga, GE’s Distributed Power country leader for sub-Saharan Africa.
GE launched its new Distributed Power business in February 2014, combining three product lines—aeroderivative gas turbines, Jenbacher gas engines and Waukesha gas engines—to better serve the distributed power space and help meet the world’s growing demand for on-site power systems that are easier to finance, faster to install and more efficient and reliable for customers.
GE Power & Water’s Distributed Power business is a leading provider of power equipment, engines and services, focused on power generation at or near the point of use. Distributed Power’s product portfolio includes GE’s aeroderivative gas turbines and reciprocating engines, which generate 100 kilowatts to 100 MW of power for numerous industries globally. Headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, Distributed Power employs about 5,000 people around the world.