Gensets Growing Into Primary Power Sources
Two major engine generating-set manufacturers have each announced projects approaching the size of full-scale power plants.
Caterpillar Inc. recently completed what it calls its largest-ever power installation, located in the city of Azua in the Dominican Republic. The $95 million plant can generate up to 100 megawatts (MW), providing power to more than 125,000 homes. It is powered by 13 generating units, each rated at 8 MW. The engines were manufactured at a Caterpillar facility in Germany.
Cummins Power Generation has announced completion of a 44-MW plant in Anapolis, Brazil. The project is part of a Brazilian government plan to encourage development of emergency generating plants. The country is facing severe power shortages after several years of low rainfall have dried up much of its extensive hydroelectric capacity. The new plant incorporates 16 1.6-MW units and 17 1.1-MW units and will operate on a standby basis, coming online whenever the government declares a power emergency.
In both cases, the manufacturers have been very active participants in their respective projects, participated in the financing, as well as plant design. Both manufacturers are also part-owners of the installations.