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What is DCP228 and how will it affect my business?

Energy specialist can help guard against rising bills

2017 08 08 095958

Utility management specialist Orchard Energy is advising businesses to act now, ahead of the upcoming DCP228 legislation, which will change the way that many firms are charged for their energy use.

Formulated by British Gas in 2016, the new legislation is expected to be enforced by Ofgem in April 2019, which means businesses have less than two years to ready themselves.

The legislation will change the way that customer tariffs are calculated and could drastically impact energy bills.

DCP228 will reduce charges made during peak ‘red’ energy use periods, but businesses that use energy during ‘amber’ and ‘green’ periods could see their bills go up.

Business owners are being encouraged to seek advice and re-examine when energy is consumed, to ensure they are not stung by the changes.

Orchard Energy managing director, Amar Hussain, said: “Now is the time for businesses to analyse and evaluate their energy use, ahead of the upcoming legislation.

“Orchard Energy can advise business owners on how DCP228 will affect their business, what opportunities there are for savings to be made, and how business owners can mitigate against possible rising bills.

“We can ensure that your business is DCP228-ready, and help business owners become more energy savvy.”

Orchard Energy specialises in energy purchasing, bureau services, energy solutions and water management for business across the UK.

Other services include invoice validation, key account management, changes of tenancy, terminations and contract transfers; cost savings compliance and connection; as well as water drainage, such as leak detection.

Following the deregulation of the water market, businesses can now choose their own water supplier. It’s a good opportunity for financial decision-makers to compare water packages and identify the service that is most cost-effective and works best for them.

For more information, go to www.orchardenergy.co.uk

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Official opening for Angolan hydropower plant Cambambe 2: Voith technology to supply electricity for eight million people

In the presence of 500 international guests from the political, industrial and social arenas, Angola's Vice President Manuel Domingos Vicente officially opened the Cambambe 2 hydropower plant at the end of June 2017 on behalf of President José Eduardo dos Santos. Technology Group Voith was the project's key partner and was responsible for the supply and installation of the turbines, generators, control technology and associated electromechanical systems. The order volume for Voith amounted to more than EUR 100 million.

  • Major contribution to the expansion of Angola's electricity generating capacities
  • Voith's tailored financing package and technical concept pay dividends
  • Hydropower potential of 43 GW technically feasible in Angola

The new Cambambe 2 hydropower plant has four generator-turbine units with a total installed capacity of 700 MW. In future, the plant on the River Kwanza will generate electricity for up to eight million of Angola's residents and will therefore make a significant contribution to expanding the electricity generation capacities of this nation in southwestern Africa.

2017 08 02 111005The Cambambe power plant during construction works.

The new hydropower facility was installed next to the existing Cambambe 1 plant, which has been in operation since 1962 and was extensively upgraded by Voith between 2008 and 2012. The technology group Voith was able to increase the power plant output by around 40 percent to 260 MW, which is higher than the contractually agreed level. Due to its positive experience with this project, the state energy utility and plant operator Empresa Nacional de Electricidade de Angola (ENE) again opted to work with Voith to supply the electromechanical equipment for the new Cambambe 2 power plant.

“Our strategy of offering the customer an integrated approach, and our outstanding work on the Cambambe 1 project, were the deciding factors in the company's decision to choose Voith as the key supplier for Cambambe 2. An attractive, tailored financing package and our solid technical approach, as well as the timely fulfillment of our obligations, also had considerable influence on this decision,'' says Patric Kiehlmann, Project Manager for Cambambe at Voith Hydro.

All four units went into operation at the end of 2016, just four years after Voith received the order for Cambambe 2. As of now, the total combined output of the Cambambe 1 and 2 power plants will be 960 MW. This means that they play a crucial role in the Angolan government's strategy of significantly increasing the proportion of electricity generation from hydropower. The estimated hydropower potential in Angola is 43 GW, but until now only around 11 percent of it has been harnessed.

2017 08 02 111030The official opening ceremony for the new Cambambe 2 power plant in Angola.

The overall hydropower potential in Africa is considerable: On the entire continent the technically feasible development potential of hydropower is estimated at more than 470 GW. However, the current installed capacity in Africa is only around 31 GW, giving Africa the world's highest percentage of hydropower potential that has not yet been harnessed.

The importance of Hydropower
Renewable energy is undoubtedly the most sustainable answer to the rise in energy demand. Hydropower plays a key role in sustainable and environmentally friendly power generation and is the leading renewable source of electricity generation globally. Worldwide it makes an indispensable contribution to a stable power supply and thus to economic and social development – both in industrialized countries and in regions seeing strong growth. Since the early days of hydropower exploitation, Voith has been a leading supplier of this technology and is constantly refining and improving it.

About the Company
For 150 years, Voith technologies have been inspiring its customers, business partners and employees all over the world. Founded in 1867, Voith today has around 19,000 employees and earns 4.3 billion euros in sales. It has locations in more than 60 countries and is one of the largest familyowned companies in Europe. As a technology leader, Voith sets standards in the energy, oil & gas, paper, raw materials and transport & automotive markets.

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A milestone for hydropower: Successful startup of Frades II, the largest variable speed pumped storage plant in Europe

Vieira do Minho, Portugal: With its increasing use of solar and wind power, Portugal has for many years been focusing on the flexible and dynamic potential of pumped storage to stabilize electricity grids.

In the north-west of the country, the new pumped storage plant Frades II has been in operation since April 2017. Technology Group Voith supplied the plant with two variable speed pump turbines each with a rated output of 390 MW, two asynchronous motor-generators with a rated output of 440 MVA each, the frequency converter and control systems as well as the hydraulic steel components. The generator sets are the largest and most powerful of their kind in Europe. The plant operator is the Portuguese utility company Energias de Portugal (EDP).

2017 08 02 110512The pumped storage power plant is located in the north-west of Portugal and is installed in an underground cavern.

Innovative pumped storage technology using variable speed turbines
"The key element of the plant is a special asynchronous motor-generator – the doubly fed asynchronous generator," explains Thomas König, who is responsible for Electrical Balance of Plant at Voith Hydro in Heidenheim, Germany. Unlike a conventional asynchronous generator, with a rotational speed firmly locked to the line frequency of 50 Hz, in the new doubly fed asynchronous generators the mechanical speed is not tied to line frequency and so can vary.

The new system offers two advantages: On the one hand, the plant can respond faster and more flexibly to the active and reactive demand from the power grid. On the other, it offers additional stability in the event of a drop in voltage, reduces the likelihood of a power failure and enables a fast restart if a power outage does occur. "If the grid voltage drops to 5% of its normal value, the Frades II power plant can remain stable for 600 milliseconds, that is four times longer than conventional turbines with fixed speeds. In emergency situations this time difference can be crucial when there is a need to prevent a large-scale power outage," says Thomas König.

Innovation as benchmark
The new Frades II pumped storage power plant called for innovative thinking of Voith's engineers in a large number of areas. For example, the rotor of the motor-generator had to be completely redesigned in order to cope with the high centrifugal forces, the much higher current and the voltage from the frequency converter. The converter for the excitation is larger, heavier and 25 times more powerful than in a comparable synchronous unit and therefore also requires a new electrical protection system.

2017 08 02 1105443D model of the generator in the Frades II pumped storage power plant.

EDP reaps the benefits of these innovations, as Lars Meier, Head of Technical Sales and Tender Management at Voith Hydro in Heidenheim, explains: "The motor-generator technology with variable speed at Frades II increases the total number of operating hours for the plant. More operating hours and higher availability generate more revenue and ultimately more benefit. This is one of the reasons why comparable power plants can very quickly write off the necessary investments. Another fantastic spin-off of the technology is the increased operational efficiency overall."

Prototype plant for other projects worldwide
The Frades II pumped storage power plant makes a significant contribution to stabilizing the grid and to the ongoing expansion of power generation from renewable energy in Portugal. Following the successful startup, the biggest variable speed pumped storage plant in Europe is considered the flagship project for further plants worldwide.

Background information to Frades II pumped storage power plant
The pumped storage power plant is located in the north-west of Portugal and is installed in an underground cavern. It is not designed as a standalone facility but represents an important addition to the eight plant Cávado-Rabagão-Homem cascade system. The difference in height between upper and lower basins is 420 meters. Voith was awarded the order to equip the Frades II pumped storage power plant in the fall of 2010.

Portugal focusing on renewable energies
Portugal is banking above all on wind, solar and hydropower for its electricity generation. Since the turn of the century, the country has multiplied its capacities for electricity generation from wind power. In 1998, Portugal had just over 51 MW installed capacity in wind power plants; 18 years later it was already more than 5,000 MW. Highly efficient pumped storage plants form the backbone for the further expansion of electricity generation from regenerative energy sources. Almost a third of renewable energy in Portugal comes from hydropower.

On the importance of hydropower
Hydropower is the biggest, oldest and most reliable form of renewable energy generation. Worldwide it makes an indispensable contribution to a stable power supply and thus to economic and social development – in industrialized countries and also in regions seeing strong growth. In addition, hydropower contributes significantly to climate-friendly energy generation. Since the early days of hydropower exploitation, Voith has been a leading supplier of this technology and is constantly refining and improving it.

About the Company
For 150 years, Voith technologies have been inspiring its customers, business partners and employees all over the world. Founded in 1867, Voith today has around 19,000 employees and earns 4.3 billion euros in sales. It has locations in more than 60 countries and is one of the largest familyowned companies in Europe. As a technology leader, Voith sets standards in the energy, oil & gas, paper, raw materials and transport & automotive markets.

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Voith undertakes pioneering collaborative study in hydropower modernization with the National University of La Plata, Argentina

Voith has agreed to undertake a pioneering collaborative hydropower study with the National University of La Plata (UNLP), in Argentina, in an uprating and modernization research on the existing Argentinian large hydropower plants. 

  • Argentina is the third-largest economy in Latin America and also the third-largest energy consumer in the region
  • Uprate initiatives in the hydropower scenario are targeted to benefit Argentina, as the country relies on this energy source for ~30% of its power generation and it accounts for more than 10 GW of installed hy-dro capacity

2016 05 31 070645In early June, Voith President and CEO, Dr. Hubert Lienhard, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Prof. Marcos Actis, Dean of the University of La Plata. In his role as Chairman of the Asia Pacific Committee of German Business, Dr. Lienhard accompanied German Chancellor Angela Merkel who visited Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina, to meet with President Mauricio Macri in order to strengthen the political alliance between both countries.

A joint collaboration for the future
Voith has agreed to contribute with its knowledge and expertise in hydro to UNLP, who will conduct an uprate study in the hydroelectric system currently existing in Argentina, for the ultimate purpose of providing the Argentine Government with information regarding the potential of such improvements. Modernization projects seek to restore equipment to its original condition, improve service life, power generation and system reliability, as well as reduce a plant’s maintenance costs. With the progress of technology, ever-increasing gains can be achieved by upgrading systems and equipment in older power plants.

Energy outlook in Argentina
Uprate initiatives in the hydropower scenario are targeted to benefit Argentina, as the country relies on this energy source for ~30% of its power generation and it accounts for more than 10 GW of installed hydro capacity. This is in the face of a challenging energy outlook: according to the World Economic Outlook (WEO April 2017), Argentina’s economy will recover after the 2016 recession and is expected to grow consistently from 2.2% in 2017 to 3.1% in 2022.

Argentina is the third-largest economy in Latin America and also the third-largest energy consumer in the region. This partnership project will contribute to the country’s development: first, through the increase in the energy output and second, through the development of local professional expertise with regard to the best practices in terms of hydroelectric energy uprates. ‘‘We are glad to be working with the National University of La Plata and to be able to contribute to the development of a clean, renewable future for Latin America,’’ says Mr. Uwe Wehnhardt, President and CEO of Voith Hydro.

The importance of Hydropower
Renewable energy is undoubtedly the most sustainable answer to the rise in energy demand. Hydropower plays a key role in sustainable and environmentally friendly power generation and is the leading renewable source of electricity generation globally. Worldwide it makes an indispensable contribution to a stable power supply and thus to economic and social development – both in industrialized countries and in regions seeing strong growth. Since the early days of hydropower exploitation, Voith has been a leading supplier of this technology and is constantly refining and improving it.

About the Company
For 150 years, Voith technologies have been inspiring its customers, business partners and employees all over the world. Founded in 1867, Voith today has around 19,000 employees and earns 4.3 billion euros in sales. It has locations in more than 60 countries and is one of the largest family-owned companies in Europe. As a technology leader, Voith sets standards in the energy, oil & gas, paper, raw materials and transport & automotive markets.

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Modular Rotork CK actuators introduce reliable and economical automation at hydroelectric facility

Rotork CK Range modular electric valve actuators have provided a reliable and economical automated flow control solution for a hydroelectric generating station in Mexico. The actuators have been installed at the Alameda Hidroeléctrica Planta to control the flow of water to turbines generating up to 6 MW of electricity.

The modular CK design enabled the operator to tailor the actuator specification to precisely match the requirements of the application. The selection of CK actuators complete with Centronik digital control units required only the provision of a mains electricity supply to provide automation of the previously hand operated valves.

2017 07 10 091323Rotork CK modular electric valve actuators have provided a reliable and economical automated flow control solution at the Alameda Hidroeléctrica Planta.

The Centronik control unit provides intelligent valve control with data logging for diagnostics and asset management. Rapid and secure commissioning and configuration is performed using selector switches on the Centronik housing or via a setting tool, following user-friendly menu driven screens displayed on the actuator indication window. In normal operation the window displays the valve position, valve status and alarms.

Standard features that are common to all CK actuators include IP68 double-sealed environmental protection, plug and socket connections for fast and efficient commissioning and maintenance, motor-independent handwheel operation, mechanical valve position indication and independent torque and position sensing for increased valve protection. Actuator gearboxes are oil lubricated for extended life and separable thrust or non-thrust bases enable actuators to be removed without disturbing the valve position.

CK actuators are fully supported by the Rotork worldwide network of offices and representatives, in this case locally provided by Rotork Servo Controles de Mexico.

For sixty years, engineers have relied upon Rotork for innovative and dependable flow control solutions. Rotork products and services are helping companies in the oil & gas, water & wastewater, power generation, marine, mining, food, pharmaceutical and chemical industries around the world to improve efficiency, assure safety and protect the environment.