The LM6000 gas turbine at the combined cycle in Maputo, Mozambique, had its first fire end of March.
The project has been financed by Japan, with $170 million US dollars, while Mozambique utility EDM has provided $13 million from its own funds.
With a generating capacity of 106MW, the power plant is expected to meet about 10% of Mozambique’s domestic power demand. The second turbine is expected to start operating in about a month and by June the entire plant is expected to be operational.
Companies from around the world are moving into Mozambique, an East African trade hub and a natural resource-rich country whose economy continues to grow at a high rate of 7%-8% per year. Coupled with that, power demand has also been shooting up at a rate of 10% annually. Although the country covers an extensive territory stretching 2,000km north to south, Mozambique relies primarily on hydroelectric power plants in the northwest for its electric power, and the construction of new power plants has become an issue of great urgency. The large-scale gas fields available for development make it likely that gas-fired power plants will one day become the primary source of electric power, thus necessitating greater know-how on operating gas-fired power plants. Mozambican engineers are being trained in Japan to operate the plant.