Fully charged: Middle East Electricity highlightsby John Bambridge on Mar 12, 2017
It seems unlikely that there are many exhibition halls as focused and yet as diverse as the generator section of Middle East Electricity (MEE), a show which this year saw its 42nd iteration.
From door to door and wall to wall, the event saw the demonstration of generator sets great and small, and all in all shapes, sizes and colours. PMV Middle East caught up with some of the heavy hitters.
Drawing the line just short of complete generator fabrication is Volvo Penta, which has chosen to avoid direct genset sales in favour of remaining an independent supplier of engines to the whole industry. it launched two new 16-litre diesel engines at the show: the TWD1644GE and TWD1645GE — the latter extending Volvo Penta’s competitive range up to 800kVA and which the manufacturer claims has the highest power density engine per litre of displacement in its class.
There to present the launch was Giorgio Paris, Volvo Penta’s president of emerging markets, who noted: “The development of these two new engines is a great tool to expand our presence in the upper range – now we have put forward a diesel engine that covers a range between 500kVA and 800 kVA, which is almost unique in the power generation business.
“The Middle East is one of the biggest power gen markets, and the upper range is definitely a market that is growing. These two new engines will allow Volvo Penta to penetrate power nodes where we have never been before.”
Volvo’s 16-litre family is one that is already quite well known and popular in the region, with Paris noting that there are many of these units working in Saudi Arabia to pump water from the ground for agricultural irrigation: “We have sold thousands of 16l engines into the region over the years.”
The TWD1644GE and TWD1645GE are an evolution of Volvo Penta’s existing range, with changes being made to the charger, the pistons, the wiring and the electronics.
The units have two fixed ratings: 1500rpm or 1800rpm, delivered at 50Hz or 60Hz, repsectively, and come with a standard warranty of two years. An extended four-year warranty can also be purchased. Reliability was one of the main pitches for the product, and they were introduced with the slogan ‘the heart that never stops’.
Paris continued: “In terms of total cost of ownership, we pay a very high degree of attention to fuel consumption — when these machines are working 24 hours a day, fuel consumption is a key element, and so our engineers have worked hard to make the engine efficiency really high.”
Commenting on MEE, Paris added: “My impression is that this show is developing quite well, and increasingly becoming a benchmark for the power generation business in the region.”
Vertically integrated Spanish manufacturer Himoinsa was at the show this year to present technological concepts as much as products — advocating for the potential of integrating generator sets with photovoltaic systems.
Such hybrid solutions have the potential to reduce operator fuel costs and OPEX while taking advantage of solar resources in areas with high levels of solar irradiation. They also hold considerable potential for the supply of power in remote areas where the power grid either does not reach or is unreliable.
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