Johannesburg – Eskom has announced that this week Unit 3 of the Kusile Power Station achieved commercial operation status. This brings to three the number of generation units that have achieved commercial status at the project, generating a maximum 2 400MW to support the South African power grid. Bringing the 800MW unit to commercial status means construction activity has come to an end on half the eMalahleni, Mpumalanga project.
The achievement of this milestone follows two years of rigorous testing and optimisation since the unit was first synchronised into the national grid in April 2019. This significant milestone marks the contractual handover of the unit from the principal contractors under the Group Capital Build project unit to the Generation division.
The construction, testing and optimisation activities on the remaining three units, some of which are currently providing intermittent power to support the grid, are progressing well.
Commercial Operation status is conferred on generation units that have met the requirements for full technical, statutory, safety and legal compliance.
Kusile is the first power station in South Africa and Africa to use wet flue gas desulphurisation (WFGD) technology. WFGD is the current state-of-the-art technology used to remove oxides of sulphur (SOx), for example, sulphur dioxide (SO2), from the exhaust flue gas in power plants that burn coal or oil.
Eskom is fitting WFGD to the Kusile plant as an atmospheric emission abatement technology, in line with current international practice, to ensure compliance with air quality standards and its commitments to some of the funders of the project.
Eskom generates, transmits and distributes electricity to industrial, mining, commercial, agricultural and residential customers and redistributors. Additional power stations and major power lines are being built to meet rising electricity demand in South Africa. Eskom will continue to focus on improving and strengthening its core business of electricity generation, transmission, trading and distribution.