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Electricity News

No conclusive data on feasibility of nuclear, National Treasury says

By: African News Agency      2nd December 2016 National Treasury has said there are no conclusive figures to date on the financial affordability and social impact on procuring new nuclear plants for South Africa. In a response to a parliamentary question released on Friday, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said studies released by the... 

South African nuclear regulator to host international review mission

By: Keith Campbell     2nd December 2016 An Integrated Regulatory Review Service (IRRS) mission of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will be active in South Africa from December 5 to 15, the National Nuclear Regulator (NNR) announced on Thursday. The purpose of the IRRS mission will be to examine South Africa’s nuclear... 

South African nuclear regulator to host international review mission
Photo by Duane Daws/Creamer Media
Dr Mzubanzi Bismark Tyobeka

86 MW Northern Cape solar photovoltaic plant connected to national grid

By: Dylan Slater     2nd December 2016 Developed on a remote site 50 km south-west of Prieska in the Northern Cape, the 86 MW Mulilo-Sonnedix-Prieska photovoltaic (PV) project was connected to the national grid in October, thereby finalising the project on schedule, on budget and reaching full grid code compliance in good time for... 

86 MW Northern Cape solar photovoltaic plant  connected to national grid
MEGA POWER The 86 MW Mulilo-Sonnedix-Prieska photovoltaic project has the capacity to power 86 000 homes

Company extends range to meet demand for portable power

     2nd December 2016 Having identified a growing need for dependable portable power, particularly for use in agriculture and mining, for maximum efficiency of power tools in construction and for small-scale commercial and residential applications, custom power solutions provider Vert Energy is extending its range of... 

Company extends range to meet demand for portable power
ENSURING DEPENDABLE POWER NSM’s welder is just one of several new products in Vert Energy’s offering for the mining, commercial and industrial sectors

High- and medium-speed power generation products for South Africa

     2nd December 2016 Power systems provider Rolls-Royce presented its high-speed and medium-speed power generation products, including various power generation solutions in the 24 kW to 9 400 kW range suitable for a wide variety of applications and types of fuel, at Power & Electricity World Africa. The event was... 

Hybrid gensets to complement renewable energy

By: Robyn Wilkinson     2nd December 2016 Generating set producer Aksa Power Generation South Africa (SA) will launch its hybrid generating set (genset) in South Africa in January next year, providing a standby power generating solution to the country that is able to run in parallel with renewable-energy sources. 

Monitoring portal ensures standby power equipment is primed

By: Robyn Wilkinson     2nd December 2016 Power management solutions provider Powermode has introduced its monitoring portal, which provides real-time feedback on the performance of standby power equipment to prevent power failures. 

Monitoring portal ensures standby power equipment is primed
RELIABLE READINGS The Powermode Monitoring Portal provides more accurate information than other systems owing to its ability to measure both the incoming and outgoing current in the battery

New small-scale generator powerful but quiet

     2nd December 2016 This year, generator provider Kohler Generators introduced its 30 kW standby generator, which is ideally suited to larger homes and smaller business as it is both powerful and quiet. 

New small-scale generator powerful but quiet
POWERING HOMES As people continue to build larger homes, Kohler Generators has seen an increased demand for smaller residential generators

Parallel generator plants a cost effective solution

By: Robyn Wilkinson     2nd December 2016 The parallel synchronisation of smaller generators to achieve the same power outputs as a single large generator offers significant cost-saving benefits to South African businesses that must manage continued grid power supply uncertainties, says generator manufacturer Maverick Generators MD... 

Parallel generator plants a cost  effective solution
ALTERNATE POWER PLANTS Maverick Generator’s eight-unit parallel generator plant has proven to be a cost-effective back-up power solution for an agriculture company in Limpopo

Plans in place to stimulate industries for further economic growth

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd December 2016 Being the second largest regional economy after Gauteng, the Western Cape is set on creating new industries as well as stimulating labour-intensive industries such as agroprocessing, marine culture, the green economy, tourism, and oil and gas to further grow the economy. 

Plans in place to stimulate industries for further  economic growth
JANINE MYBURGH There has been great cooperation between the private sector, the province and the council to improve, build and promote Cape Town

Preventing interference of electrical noise in emergency operations

     2nd December 2016 Power generation equipment producer Cummins has changed the control system inside its generators to prevent the electrical noise from adversely impacting the operation of hydraulic generators in emergency vehicles. 

Proposed standards for vegetable oil for use in transformers problematic – engineer

By: Schalk Burger     2nd December 2016 The standards proposed for the production of vegetable oils to use as electricity transformer oil are unnecessary, and prevent the inclusion of smaller producers who stand to benefit most and provide the greatest number of new employment opportunities, says retired chemical engineer John... 

Solar system donation for Western Cape nonprofit organisation

By: David Oliveira     2nd December 2016 Solar power solutions manufacturer SolarWorld Africa donated a R120 000 5 kW solar system to Western Cape-based non-profit organisation Grootbos Foundation’s Green Futures horticulture and life-skills college, which will significantly reduce the foundation’s electricity overheads, allowing for... 

UK to stimulate nuclear research, development and innovation

By: Keith Campbell     2nd December 2016 The United Kingdom has launched a new nuclear innovation programme. This was recently announced in Manchester by the country’s Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (equivalent to Minister in South Africa), Greg Clark. “We want to upgrade the UK’s existing nuclear... 

Awareness low of South Africa’s ‘astounding’ renewables success, US survey finds

By: Terence Creamer     1st December 2016 Amid domestic uncertainty about the future of South Africa’s renewable-energy procurement programme, a US State Department official has described the initiative as “astoundingly successful” and reports that several countries are currently seeking to draw lessons from the country’s reverse-auction... 

Awareness low of South Africa’s ‘astounding’ renewables success, US survey finds

Kibo receives integrated draft financial model for MCPP

By: Anine Kilian     1st December 2016 Tanzania-focused mineral exploration and development company Kibo has received an advanced draft of the integrated financial model for the Mbeya coal-to-power project (MCPP) from its financial advisers, Absa/Barclays. The model will be the subject of extensive review and further adjustment, based... 

Eskom commissions 765 kV transmission line in Western Cape

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     1st December 2016 State-owned Eskom earlier this week commissioned its 765 kV Kappa–Sterrekus transmission line, connecting the Western Cape to the network over and above the 400 kV network. The 765 kV is one of the highest voltages used for electricity transfer in the world. This line connects Sterrekus’s 765 kV... 

Guptas, Eskom still not budging on R2bn coal fine payment 

By: News24Wire      1st December 2016 The Guptas, who part-own Optimum Coal Mine through Tegeta Resources and Energy with President Jacob Zuma’s son Duduzane Zuma, have yet to pay the R2.176-billion fine imposed on it by Eskom. That is according to a written Parliamentary response by Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown on Wednesday. 

Koko appointed Eskom acting CEO 

By: Terence Creamer     30th November 2016 Eskom group executive for generation Matshela Koko has been named acting CEO as from December 1. The appointment follows the November 11 resignation of Brian Molefe, which came in the wake of the release of the Public Protector’s 'State of Capture' report, in which he was implicated. Molefe has... 

Koko appointed Eskom acting CEO
Photo by Duane Daws
Matshela Koko

Brown says current power build ‘trajectory’ may be detrimental to consumers 

By: Terence Creamer     30th November 2016 Public Enterprises Lynne Brown says that South Africa is currently adding electricity capacity to the grid at rate higher than what is required and argues that the “current trajectory” could be detrimental to consumers. She asserts, therefore, that it is “critical that the Integrated Resource... 

Brown says current power build ‘trajectory’ may be detrimental to consumers
Photo by Duane Daws
Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown

Kganyago holds up renewables scheme as the type of structural reform needed to lift growth 

By: Terence Creamer     29th November 2016 South African Reserve Bank (SARB) governor Lesetja Kganyago has lamented the prevailing uncertainty around South Africa’s renewable-energy procurement programme, which he heralds as the type of “no-brainer” structural reform that should be continued and expanded. Speaking at a briefing of editors... 

Kganyago holds up renewables scheme as the type of structural reform needed to lift growth
Photo by Reuters
Reserve Bank Governor Lesetja Kganyago

Russian nuclear company looks forward to result of nuclear debate in South Africa

By: Keith Campbell     29th November 2016 Russian State-owned nuclear group Rosatom has reaffirmed its respect for South Africa’s domestic policy debates and decisions. “We respect South African government processes and decisions,” Rosatom International regional VP: sub-Saharan Africa Viktor Polikarpov told Engineering News Online on... 

Russian nuclear company looks forward to result of nuclear debate in South Africa

Energy department reluctantly gives insight into nuclear studies 

By: African News Agency      29th November 2016 A study by the department of energy and National Treasury on a funding model for the planned nuclear expansion programme handed to Cabinet in 2015 advised that the best way to test cost analysis was to go to the market for tenders, the department told MPs on Wednesday. Deputy director general:... 

Outa calls for forensic audit of Eskom 

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     28th November 2016 The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) on Monday called on the public to “rally” for a full forensic audit of State-owned electricity generator Eskom, following “yet another vote of no-confidence on Eskom’s financials and governance manifesting in a Standard & Poor’s (S&P’s) downgrade”. S&P’s... 

Zimbabwe to implement key regional power inter-connector project in 2018

By: African News Agency      28th November 2016 The Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC) said it would start working on its component of the regional Zimbabwe-Zambian-Botswana-Namibia (Zizabona) electricity inter-connector project early in 2018. The announcement came shortly after the country received a... 

Rwandan peat-to-power project to generate 80 MW

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     28th November 2016 A $350-million deal has been signed to finance an 80 MW peat-to-power project in Rwanda, which aims to increase access to electricity for the three-quarters of the country’s population that is currently off the grid. The group of signatories includes Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), which is... 

South Africa's proposed nuclear power plant unsafe – study

By: Reuters     28th November 2016 South African power provider Eskom has proposed building a nuclear power station on a site that may be at risk of surge storms and tsunamis, a geological report suggests, but the state-owned utility disputes the findings. South Africa has the continent's only nuclear power station and plans to... 

S&P's downgrades Eskom further into junk territory

By: Reuters     25th November 2016 Standard & Poor's Global Ratings on Friday cut South African power utility Eskom's credit rating a further notch into subinvestment, raising concerns the country's sovereign rating would also be dragged into junk status. S&P's, which has South Africa's debt on the lowest investment level with a... 

S&P's downgrades Eskom further into junk territory
Photo by Duane Daws
CFO Anoj Singh

Renewables body questions ongoing constraints on clean technologies in IRP base case 

By: Terence Creamer     25th November 2016 The South African Renewable Energy Council (Sarec) has added its voice to those questioning the constraints imposed on renewable-energy technologies in the updated base case of Integrated Resource Plan (IRP), which has been released for public comment. The council, which is the umbrella body for... 

Renewables body questions ongoing constraints on clean technologies in IRP base case

Exxaro confident Eskom contracts safe, despite BEE ownership decreasing to 30%

By: Ilan Solomons     25th November 2016 Diversified miner Exxaro Resources has assured investors that despite its black ownership falling below the 51% required by State-owned power utility Eskom for all its supply contracts, this will not affect its existing supply contracts with the utility. The company is set to introduce a new... 

Exxaro confident Eskom contracts safe, despite BEE ownership decreasing to 30%
Photo by Duane Daws
Exxaro CEO Mxolisi Mgojo

Sasol turns focus to oil in Moz after shoring up gas for 400 MW power plant

By: Terence Creamer     25th November 2016 South African energy and chemicals group Sasol has completed drilling two gas wells in southern Mozambique and has since turned its attention to the development of two commercial oil reservoirs, located in close proximity to its producing gas fields in Temane and Pande. Under the terms of the... 

Sasol turns focus to oil in Moz after shoring up gas for 400 MW power plant
Photo by Duane Daws
John Sichinga

Electrolux to buy South African water heater firm Kwikot

By: Irma Venter     25th November 2016 Swedish appliance manufacturer Electrolux has announced that it will acquire South African water heater producer Kwikot from RMB Corvest and other parties. The price tag for the deal is not known. 

Busa concerned about Eskom, govt misalignment on nuclear component of IRP 

By: Terence Creamer     24th November 2016 Business Unity South Africa (Busa) expressed concern on Thursday about a seeming lack of alignment between government and Eskom on the nuclear component of the newly released draft base case of the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP). In a statement welcoming the Department of Energy’s (DoE’s)... 

Busa concerned about Eskom, govt misalignment on nuclear component of IRP

Draft IRP base case details role of nuclear, renewables in future energy mix 

     24th November 2016 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the release of the draft IRP base case and Eskom’s plans to proceed with the nuclear tender before the IRP is finalised. 

Draft IRP base case details role of nuclear, renewables in future energy mix
Draft IRP base case details role of nuclear, renewables in future energy mix

Wind and solar PV bodies cautiously welcome draft IRP, CSP body to contest exclusion 

By: Terence Creamer     23rd November 2016 The wind and solar photovoltaic (PV) industry bodies have responded positively to the allocations outlined in the draft Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) base case, while the concentrated solar power (CSP) body has expressed dismay at the technology’s exclusion. South African Wind Energy Association... 

Wind and solar PV bodies cautiously welcome draft IRP, CSP body to contest exclusion

ABB delivers R1.2m substation to CPUT

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     22nd November 2016 Power and automation group ABB will this month deliver a R1.2-million UniPack compact substation to the Cape Peninsula University of Technology’s (CPUT’s) chemical engineering building, aimed at improving the university’s electrical network monitoring. The substation, the first to be supplied by... 

Dismissive of 2037 nuclear timeline in IRP base case, Eskom to release RFP by year-end 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd November 2016 State-owned power utility Eskom indicated on Tuesday that it planned to move ahead with a controversial request for proposals (RFP) for nuclear before the end of 2016, despite the base case in a draft Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) update indicating that the first reactor would only be required... 

Dismissive of 2037 nuclear timeline in IRP base case, Eskom to release RFP by year-end
Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson
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