South African state-owned utility, Eskom, humbly announced that Unit 5 at its Medupi Power Station Project in Lephalale, Limpopo, has finally achieved commercial operation status.
Operating ahead of plan, the utility said the unit was formally confirmed commercial after the completion of control performance and the 72-hour dependability tests, putting all performance warranties to effect.
The parastatal remarked: “Unit 5 was first synchronised to the national grid on 8 September 2016.
“This was then ensued by additional analysis and optimising which lead to its complete power of 800MW being accomplished on 17 December 2016.” Adding that this breakthrough came ahead of the planned timeline of March 2018.”
With a production of 800MW going to the national grid, Unit 5 joined its sister unit, Unit 6, which has been adding to the balancing of electricity supply and demand since 23 August 2015. The notable progress came after rigorous unremitting testing goings-on and shared devotion from Eskom and its implementation partners.
Matshela Koko, interim group chief executive, said: “The Eskom new build programme is intended for reinforcing the electricity supply, Medupi with its second unit coming online, is a reflection of the undertakings towards realising this enterprise, Eskom congratulates the Medupi team, this breakthrough is certainly an embodiment of delivery.”
Commercial operation status guarantees technical compliance to statutory, safety and legal requirements.
This signatory breakthrough marks the contractual conferral of the unit from the primary contractors to Eskom, which means that Medupi Unit 5 is now part of the Eskom Generation fleet.
The African Development Bank loaned $500 million for the project in 2008. In 2010, the World Bank granted to loan South Africa $3.75 billion to help with numerous energy projects, with $3.05 billion allotted for completion of the Medupi power station.
The consent of the World Bank loan drew disapproval for supporting increased global emissions of greenhouse gases