Before purchasing SENECA, the electricity provider for Margarita Island, Venezuela, CMS Energy knew that the island’s existing power plant and distribution system needed major upgrades. To help compensate for the potential peak demand period during the summer tourist season and anticipated power lost during equipment upgrades, CMS turned to Caterpillar to supply 44 MWe of temporary power from 34 power modules.

In late June 1999, the failure of a submarine power cable from the mainland made the situation critical. Caterpillar was able to deliver 34 modules within 30 days. The equipment was brought online in two phases during July and August 1999. Caterpillar provided 22 Cat 3516 power modules, each rated at 1.45 MWe, and 12 Cat 3512 power modules, each rated at 1.01 MWe.

The 34 power modules are scheduled to operate until March 2000.