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Unit 2 first synchronisation achievement. File Pic supplied

Medupi’s fifth unit synchronised to the grid

Unit 2 at Eskom’s Medupi Power Station in Lephalale was on Sunday synchronised to the national grid, the Power Utility reported on Tuesday.

The Group Executive for Group Capital Abram Masango said the project loaded the unit to 400 MW at 16:30 [Sunday], making it the fifth of the six Medupi units to synchronise it to the national grid.

“Unit 2 first synchronisation achievement, eight months ahead of the June 2019 schedule, marks a key milestone towards full commercial operation of the unit.

The team implemented lessons learnt on previous units on Unit 2, leading to the swiftness in delivering first power.

This is an amazing achievement, taking us closer to completing the entire Medupi project, as it will leave us [Eskom] with one unit,” said Masango.

The electricity giant stack gestures of recognition to a group driven by Zandi Shange , the first woman Project Director of a new build mega project, saying during this testing and optimisation phase Unit 2 will deliver power, thus contributing towards stability of the country’s electricity supply.

“Our aim is to ensure that we conclude the project well within time, with a positive legacy for all,” said Masango.

“The delivery of Unit 2 affirms to everyone who has been part of the project that can deliver a world-class power station.

This achievement would not have been possible without the team.

As we approach the last stretch of the project, we will apply the same vigour as we work towards the unit’s commercial operation, and synchronising the remaining unit,” said Shange.

The next step will be the testing and optimisation of the Unit, resulting in the Unit being able to generate full power of 794MW of electricity feeding into the national grid for the country’s consumption.

  • Once completed, Medupi will be the fourth largest coal-fired power plant, and the largest dry-cooled power station in the world. It will comprise six units with an installed capacity of 4,764MW.
  • The planned operational life of the power station is 50 years.
  • The Medupi Power Station uses direct dry-cooling systems due to the water scarcity in the Lephalale area.
  • The power plant incorporates super critical technology, which is able to operate at higher temperatures than Eskom’s earlier generation of boilers and turbines.
  • Importantly, the technology enables the power plant to operate with greater efficiency, resulting in better use of natural resources, such as water and coal, further resulting in improved environmental performance.

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