Natl grid to get 800MW power by year-end

A simple cycle unit of a newly built 225 MW combined cycle power plant at Ashuganj Power Station has started commercial production.
Officials at the power station said the simple cycle unit went into commercial production at 9:30pm on Friday and was synchronised with the national grid, reports UNB.
They said the unit was had been shut down after operation for a few hours and then again was opened on Saturday morning, and then it was producing 65 MW of electricity against its installed capacity of 144 MW (in simple cycle). After a run of about 6 hours, it was again shut down in the afternoon as part of its synchronisation mechanism, they said.
“Through the gradual increase in its running hours, we hope, the unit will come into its full-swing production within 4-5 days,” Ajit Kumar Sarker, project director of the Ashuganj Power Station Company Ltd (APSCL), a state-owned enterprise in power sector, told UNB.
He said the combined cycle unit (total 225 MW) is expected to come into commercial operation in October or November this year.
JV of Hyundai Engineering and Daewoo International Ltd have been working as EPC contractor of the 225 MW plant. Ashuganj Power Station is one of the country’s oldest and biggest power stations, located in the Ashuganj upziala of Brahmanbaria district, some 86 km north off capital Dhaka.
The station was set up in 1966 with 263.55 acres of land near Ashuganj port and now it has a total of seven generation units with the total de-rated capacity of 671 MW. Of them, five are steam turbines and two are gas turbines.
Originally, the station was under the state-owned Power Development Board (PDB). It was separated from the PDB in 2000 under a government plan of power sector unbundling programme and set up as an independent company, APSCL, under the Companies Act 1994.
As part of the current government’s massive power generation plan, a number of base load power plants were undertaken to set up in the Ashuganj Power Station.
These include a 450MW combined cycle plant (South), a 445MW combined cycle (North) and also 200 MW IPP plant.
APSCL managing director Nurul Alam said implementation of all the new units are in progress. He said when all its three base load plants will come into operation at the end of the current year, the station will get a total of about 1000 MW power.
But the company has a plan to retire some of its old generation units having the capacity of 200 MW due to their inefficiency and non-economic gas consumption. “After their retirement, the APSCL will get a net 800 MW power from the new plants,” Nurul Alam told the news agency.
He further said plants are being set up with APSCL’s own financing and ECA loan.