Antelope Station, Texas, USA
"Wärtsilä engines start very quickly and are efficient units."
-Mark W. Schwirtz, President & General Manager, GSEC
THE WIND ENABLER RETURNS TO TEXAS
The Golden Spread Electric Cooperative debated different back-up power alternatives for addressing the challenges associated with their high proportion of intermittent wind-driven generating capacity. Agricultural irrigation with its heavily varying demand for electricity further increased the flexibility demands on the wind-following plant. The quick starts and high efficiency of Wärtsilä's technology provided an ideal fit.
Ambient temperatures ranging from a low of -10°F in winter to a high of 105°F in summer (-23°C to 41°C) presented an interesting challenge. The issue was solved by installing two different cooling water configurations - one holding cooling liquid containing glycol and the other for cooling water alone - that allow for full output and efficiency across the entire ambient temperature range.
The quick-starting power plant of GSEC, suitably named “Antelope” Station, consists of 18 Wärtsilä 34SG generating sets. Mark W. Schwirtz especially highlights the value of the plant’s multi-unit setup: “They provide multiple shafts, which gives us shaft diversity so we can bring generation on in small increments. This we feel will have value in the markets that we participate in.”
Read the full story here (pdf)!