Ural partners of Siemens stop power plants
The generators brought out 400 MW. Generating companies are asking the UES System Operator to stop the operation of power plants by almost 10 GW. Market participants submitted corresponding applications within the framework of the mechanism for saving the resource of combined cycle and gas turbine power units, but so far the dispatcher has satisfied only a third of the requested volume.
SO UES explains such measures by the need to “save their resource”, which arose due to a lack of specialists, a disruption in the supply chain of spare parts and the inability to timely service foreign-made turbines. However, as insiders in generating companies point out, the sanctions affected only German equipment manufactured by Siemens. At the same time, the American General Electric, contrary to the political situation, extended contracts with Russian power engineers for the maintenance of its mechanisms for three years. Thus, the stations “Fortum” and “Inter RAO” can get under attack in the Ural Federal District. In turn, the largest consumers believe that “saving energy resources” will form additional payments to the market. According to their estimates, an increase in the program may lead to an increase in the cost of electricity in the wholesale market by 10% or more.
The system operator (SO UES) has published a list of energy districts in which the resource saving regime will be applied for combined-cycle turbines. Owners of facilities from the list will be able to start working with the last priority.
As follows from the document, as of February, generating companies submitted applications for inclusion in the list of equipment with a total capacity of almost 9,795.11 MW. At the same time, SO UES approved only 3,949.722 MW. For comparison, in January this figure was 3,788.578 MW.
A complete list of equipment has not been disclosed. However, it follows from the resolution that the largest amount of equipment will be brought to the UES of the Center – a total of 2155 MW. Another 1177 MW is in the IPS of the South. Another 216.5 and 399.7 MW in the East and Uraland accordingly.
Recall that the resource saving mechanism was developed due to the difficulties of supplying spare parts and carrying out work on foreign-made equipment. For this reason, it became necessary for generators to reduce costs and increase the service interval, which, as industry representatives point out, depends on equivalent hours.
Accordingly, it was decided to reduce the loading of such blocks and put them into conservation. At the same time, in idle mode, the units will receive payment for power from all consumers. For objects that have already paid off, the coefficient will be 0.90, and for those who still receive payments under the CSA – 0.97.
As System Operator himself explains, modern gas turbine units that are part of CCGT are the most efficient sources of generation both for equipment owners and for the power system. However, if the owner sees difficulties with the maintenance and the need to postpone it to a later date, he has the opportunity to use the resource saving mechanism next month.
Thus, if the capacity fee is reduced, the company will receive a guarantee that it will be put into operation last, and if there is enough generating capacity, the unit will remain in cold reserve.
The composition of such equipment companies in the ECO Uraland includes units at Verkhnetagilskaya GRES (Sverdlovsk Region, 447 MW), Nizhnevartovskaya GRES (KhMAO, 413 MW), Urengoyskaya GRES (YaNAO, 460 MW) and Yuzhnourallskoy GRES-2 (Chelyabinsk region, 740 MW). Also, two CCGT power units with a total capacity of 807 MW operate at Surgutskaya GRES-2, owned by Unipro PJSC. In addition, the CCGT (419 MW) operates on the Mediumuralyskaya GRES of PJSC Enel Russia, at Nizhneturinskaya GRES (484 MW) and CHP Akademicheskaya (200 MW) of PJSC T Plus, as well as at Tyumenskaya CHPP-1 (3 of 225 MW) and Nyaganskaya GRES (3 of 424 MW) owned by PJSC Fortum.
A Pravda UrFO source in PJSC T Plus noted that the resource saving mechanism is used only on units where German Siemens units are installed. At the same time, the American equipment of General Electric continues to be serviced by the manufacturer, despite the sanctions.
Back in 2022, T Plus signed a three-year contract with GE for servicing turbines. Their equipment, in particular, works at the Akademicheskaya CHPP and the Nizhneturinskaya State District Power Plant. Therefore, now the company does not have such problems. As far as I know, the Americans have extended the support of all their units in Russia. Unlike the Germans, who, contrary to the terms of the equipment supply contracts, stopped serving Russian companies,” the insider noted.
Recall that so far Russia has not launched a fully localized production of its own high-capacity turbines. Separate positions are issued by “Uralsky Turbine Plant”, however, their technical characteristics do not allow their use on large projects.
However, in January 2023, the United Engine Corporation (UEC, part of Rostec) manufactured the first serial gas turbine GTD-110M. The unit has been tested at the Ivanovskie CCGT and will be transferred to the Udarnaya TPP in the Krasnodar Territory. Since 2024, it is planned to produce two such power plants annually. However, according to analysts, the market needs several dozen units of this equipment per year.
“The main problem is that the main commissioning of new generating capacities based on CCGT took place in the 2010s, when the CSA mechanism was applied. Today, all equipment has not yet exhausted its resource, so it does not make sense to change it. The renewal of the machine park, even taking into account Russian developments, would cost the market significant payments. Under CSA-2, projects were also selected and approved, which does not promise much demand for domestic units. However, new projects can be implemented with the participation of UEC products, ”notes the source of the publication in one of the generating companies.
In turn, large consumers believe that saving resources “for power engineers” will traditionally put a burden on the entire market.
According to Valery Dzyubenko, Deputy Director of the NP Community of Energy Consumers, when CCGTs are withdrawn, they will have to be replaced with more expensive supplies.
“One way or another, almost all power units that fall under resource saving are located in the first price zone. At the same time, it is very saturated with generation, and the disposal of equipment from electricity supplies to the DAM will affect the accounts of all consumers. It is still difficult to say to what extent – now the Market Council is only assessing the price consequences. But now we can say for sure that they will. This is because highly cost-effective capacity is being phased out and replaced by more expensive applications. In turn, the reduction in capacity payment to 10% will be completely covered by the price of electricity at the DAM,” Valery Dzyubenko believes.