Operations begin on Acwa Power's 485 MW Zarqa IPP in Jordan

The power plant, which will supply enough electricity for 350,000 Jordanian households, was built by Samra Electric Power Co

Acwa Power's Zarqa IPP is located in Jordan. [representational image]
Acwa Power's Zarqa IPP is located in Jordan. [representational image]

Saudi Arabia-headquartered utilities company Acwa Power, which features the kingdom’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) as its majority stakeholder, said commercial operations have begun at its 485-megawatt (MW) Zarqa independent power plant (IPP) in Jordan.

The plant has been constructed to support the Jordan Vision 2025 and the National Energy Strategy programmes to drive power infrastructure projects in the country.

Acwa Power is the project's developer, alongside Jordan government-backed Samra Electric Power Company's unit, Sepco III Electric Power Construction Co, which acted as engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contractor.

According to a statement on the New York Stock Exchange-listed GE’s website, the company's power business has supplied three 9E heavy-duty gas turbines for the Zarqa IPP under an agreement that was inked in September 2016.

In addition to the gas turbines, the plant comprises three heat recovery steam generators (HRSG) and one steam gas turbine generator, along with six stacks, one for each gas turbine and HRSG.

Jordan’s National Electric Power Company (Nepco) has supplied a new gas pipeline connecting the project with Jordan’s main gas pipeline.

Operations commenced on 29 September, 2018, and when it reaches peak production, the plant will supply enough electricity to power 350,000 homes in Jordan.

The plant has been built with a capacity to operate 51% of combined cycle efficiency, making it Jordan’s most efficient thermal power plant. Simultaneously, it will consume less fuel and release fewer emissions per megawatt-hour of the total electricity generated.

Commenting on the plant's construction completion, Paddy Padmanathan, president and chief executive officer of Acwa Power, said: “The completion of construction and commencement of operations of the Acwa Power Zarqa plant represents our pragmatic approach to serving the power needs of growing countries and communities while increasing efficiency and delivering power at low cost.”

Padmanathan said the project will deliver electricity at ‘one of the lowest tariffs’ in Jordan.

Mohamad Ali, president and chief executive officer of GE’s gas power systems – projects business in the Middle East, Pakistan, and India, added: “GE’s 9E gas turbines can operate reliably and efficiently in extreme conditions such as Jordan’s desert heat and offers tremendous versatility and fuel flexibility, capable of running on more than 50 different kinds of fuels resulting in lower costs of power production.”

Jordan aims at driving more investments in its public and private projects to bolster domestic energy generation by 40% by 2020, and Acwa Power’s Zarqa IPP brings the Arab nation closer to its target.

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