Finnish technology group Wartsila has handed over two 50MW gas engine plants to British energy and services company Centrica for its sites located at Brigg and Peterborough in the UK.


Image: The 50 MW Wärtsilä-built plant in Brigg (above, in front) will balance the stability of the grid. Photo courtesy of Wärtsilä.

Wartsila won the EPC contracts for the two plants, which will balance the stability of the grid and generate enough electricity to supply 100,000 homes.

The project, which is in line with the company’s strategy for de-centralized power production, is expected to ease the integration of intermittent renewable capacity, particularly solar and wind power.

The two-minute fast-starting feature of the Wartsila solution will support local peaks in demand and the resultant fluctuations in supply from renewable sources.

Operational flexibility provided by the company ensures availability of energy when the supply from renewables declines.

Centrica Business Solutions distributed power systems director Mark Futyan said: “We’re pleased to open these two new plants, which will help meet the UK’s changing energy needs and ultimately support the transition to a low carbon future by providing an important back up to renewable generation.

“We’re seeing increasing demand for flexible power so this is an important demonstration of how we can help our customers to navigate the new energy landscape and deliver a variety of end-to-end solutions including onsite generation, demand side response and energy storage.”

Both plants utilize five Wartsila 34SG engines running on natural gas and have now entered commercial operation.

Wartsila Energy Solutions senior business development manager Bent Iversen said: “The UK is the leading country in shaping the electricity markets and Centrica is one of its leading operators.

“Today, renewable power sources provide roughly a quarter of the country’s total generation capacity, compared to five percent in 2006, and the share is increasing all the time. To support this trend, fast-starting, flexible generation is essential.”

Wartsila Energy Solutions offers ultra-flexible internal combustion engine-based power plants, hybridized solar power plants, energy storage and integration solutions, as well as gas to power systems.

Wartsila offers smart technologies and complete lifecycle solutions for the marine and energy markets.