By Ebrahim Fallahi

Energy Ministry plans to increase efficiency of power plants

September 18, 2020 - 14:59

TEHRAN –Iranian Energy Ministry is following a program for increasing the average efficiency of the country’s power plants in the current Iranian calendar year (started on March 19).

The mentioned program is focusing on two major aspects, one of which entails upgrading the country’s old power plants and converting several gas power plants into combined cycle plants, and the other is preventing the use of old power plants with efficiency rates lower than 20 percent.

As for the first part of the program, the Thermal Power Plants Holding Company (TPPH) is already installing steam units in some of the country’s gas power plants to increase their overall efficiency, while in the second part, the ministry is implementing consumption management programs including the allocation of various incentive packages to encourage the subscribers to consume less during the peak periods so that the ministry would not be needing to use old power plants.

In this regard, Iran’s Deputy Energy Minister Homayoun Haeri has said that the efficiency of the country’s power plants is going to improve to 39 percent by the end of the current Iranian calendar year (March 20, 2021).

According to Haeri, the average efficiency of the power plants was improved by about 0.5 percent at the end of the previous Iranian calendar month of Mordad (August 21), compared to the same date last year.

The efficiency of a plant is the percentage of the total energy content of a power plant's fuel that is converted into electricity.

There are nearly 3,000 megawatt capacity of old power plants with low efficiency (about 20 percent) in Iran which are only used during the summer peak consumption periods, and by implementing consumption management programs by the Energy Ministry the mentioned power plants won’t be used and consequently, the average efficiency will increase, according to Haeri.

He further mentioned the annual overhaul program for the country’s power plants, saying: “The annual overhaul program has already begun and to prepare the country’s power plants for the next year’s peak consumption period.”

Back in October 2018, the head of the Thermal Power Plants Holding Company (TPPH) unveiled a program for increasing the efficiency of the country’s power plants up to 40 percent.

According to Mohsen Tarztalab, the efficiency improvement program was provisioned following a development initiative foreseen in the country’s Sixth Five-Year National Development Plan (2016-2021), according to which the average efficiency of the country’s power plants was to increase 2.1 percent.

According to the sixth development plan, new power plants in Iran should operate with an efficiency of at least 55 percent.

Iran’s nominal electricity generation capacity of Iranian power plants currently stands at 85,500 megawatts [85.5 gigawatts (GW)].

Currently, combined cycle power plants account for the biggest share in the country’s total power generation capacity followed by gas power plants.

EF/MA

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