Playing a key role in the growth of the Zest WEG Group’s footprint across Africa, group company Zest Energy is moving towards the commissioning of its first reference site for diesel power generation in Zambia. Zest Energy also has installations in Congo, DRC, Tanzania, Zimbabwe and Ghana. The order was placed by Mopani Copper Mines (MCM) in August 2013 and calls for the supply and installation of a 12 MVA diesel power plant.
The scope of this project comprises the supply of six Perkins 4016 TAG2 diesel engines and 400 V alternators, complete with spare parts for operations and maintenance, six 2250 kVA dry type 400V/11 kV step-up transformers, 11 kV switchgear for the integration of generators from the power plant, all equipment needed for the generator plant control room including synchronisation and protection systems and all cabling within the mine’s generator plant building.
Alastair Gerrard, Zest Energy projects manager, says that all equipment being supplied will be installed into a newly constructed plant building. Three complete synchronisation panels are also being supplied for integration of the local energy utility Copperbelt Energy Corporation’s 11 kV incomers. The system will have the additional functionality to perform peak lopping and will thereby minimise maximum demand.
Installation commenced in June this year and commissioning started in early July, with handover scheduled for the third quarter of 2014.
“We’re utilising our group company EnI Electrical, which has an office in Kitwe, to undertake all the installation work and Zest Energy’s team of commissioning engineers will do the final setting up and hot commissioning,” says Gerrard. “Owing to the constrained space available on site, we had to optimise on the electrical design and that’s why we selected dry type transformers which can go into the new plant building. We’re also using a custom engineered busbar system between the generators and the step-up transformers.
“This contract showcases our ability to effectively integrate our power generation installations with the customer’s infrastructure and to promote flexibility in the operation of the generator plant in conjunction the local power utility. Further to this, we always try to add value by considering and factoring in future expansion requirements.
“The Mopani installation was a fit for purpose solution, owing to the load complexity on the specific shaft. We were involved in the design and engineering of the plant from the start of this project to ensure that the solution would be technically sound and cost effective.
“Our competitive edge lies in the backing of both WEG and the Zest WEG Group. WEG has a strong interest in investing into Africa, which provides the ideal platform for us to develop robust and custom engineered solutions based on our understanding of the dynamics of power generation in Africa,” Gerrard concludes.
Local content has been maximised on this installation and local labour will be utilised wherever possible. As part of the contract, Zest Energy will conduct on-site plant operator training to ensure that mine personnel will be equipped to run this power generation facility at optimal performance levels.
The Zest WEG Group is spearheading WEG’s advances into new markets and increasing its presence in Africa. Its customer portfolio is made up of the largest companies in Africa’s energy, mining, oil and gas sectors.