UK to get 50 MW gas engine plants after auction

Two gas-engine power plants are to be built in the UK for energy company Centrica.

At 50 MW each, the plants will be the biggest medium-speed engine facilities in the country and come following Centica winning agreements from the government for 500 MW of new projects in Britain’s recent capacity market auction.

The plants – at Brigg in Lincolnshire and Peterborough in Cambridgeshire – will each run on five 34SG natural gas engines provided by Finnish energy company Wartsila, which is also the EPC contractor for both projects.

Both projects are intended to bring balancing power to the UK grid, which is accommodating an increasing share of intermittent renewables, particularly windpower.

Wartsila said a key reason for its engines being chosen for the plants was because they will be able to provide “electricity for approximately 100,000 homes in less than two minutes from start to full load”.

Bent Iversen, business development manager at Wärtsilä Energy Solutions, said: "Centrica's decision to go with our technology is a testament to the fact that our Smart Power Generation technology plays a key role in the UK power system. It shows that flexibility is needed and rewarded by the market."

With these new plants Wärtsilä's installed capacity in the UK will be more than 250 MW.

Related UK power news:

Gas power topped UK power mix in 2016

Battery storage a winner in UK auction awards

UK will see more renewables investment than fossils fuels says new poll

Blackout Britain’ headlines now redundant says ex-National Grid chief

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