Petrobras inaugurates Arembepe thermoelectric plant in Bahia

Source: Petrobras

The governor of Bahia, Jaques Wagner, the CEO of Petrobras, José Sergio Gabrielli de Azevedo, and Petrobras' director for Gas & Energy, Graça Silva Foster, inaugurated the Arembepe Thermoelectric Plant (TEP), a partnership between Petrobras and Nova CIBE Energia, Wednesday (05/12). The CEO of CIBE Participações, Reinaldo Bertin, also attended the ceremony.

Built under the Growth Acceleration Program (GAP), the plant has an installed capacity of 150 MW, enough to supply a city of 500,000 inhabitants, and it kicked-off commercial operations on March 30, 2010. Driven by fuel oil, the TEP is a major undertaking which will increase not only the energy supply to the National Interconnected System (NIS), but also power safety in the State of Bahia. The plant is located in the Camaçari Petrochemical Pole. With 240,000 inhabitants, Camaçari is part of the Salvador Metropolitan Region which has an average daily demand for about 2,100 MW. The plant is connected to the core network (230 kV) by means of the Pole Sub-Station.

CEO Gabrielli highlighted the integration of the national power system and the plant's flexibility, as it can be used in stages if it is not necessary to use its top load. "The role of this thermoelectric plant is to be ready to operate. Today, our electric system has a fortress. This plant will be important to afford stability if we run on to problems, especially in hydroelectric power generation," he said.

The result of a partnership between Petrobras and Nova Cibe Energia (Bertin Ltda, Grupo Equipav, and the Caixa Economica Federal's FI-FGTS), the project was the winner of auction A-3, of 2006, which sold an average of 101 MW, energy delivered to the Interconnected National System.

Director Graça noted that the energy generated by the Arembepe TEP can be used in any region where it is needed. "The electricity is blended into the transmission line and from there it no longer has an accent or a nationality. It is just energy," she stressed.

With a total investment of R$334 million, the construction work started in February 2008 and was completed in March 2010. A total of 800 direct and 1,500 indirect jobs were created, among which there was great use of local labor. More than 90% of the workers were recruited in the region itself.
The Arembepe TEP is fitted with 60 2.5-MW Hyundai 9H25/33 motogenerators, its fuel oil consumption is in the order of 816 cubic meters per day (at full load), and it has a heat rate of 8.6 MM BTU/MWh.

A great feature of the Unit is that it is a Thermoelectric Plant that is 100% flexible in terms of electrical dispatch modulation because it consists of 60 generating units (60 X 2.5 MW). This configuration allows the generation of any amount of power, from 2.5 to 150 MW, affording it high operational flexibility and rendering it very attractive for orders to be placed by the National Power System Operator (PSO), particularly for electrical reasons.

With the inauguration of the Arembepe TEP, Petrobras' generating park added up, in May 2010, to 7,509 MW, of which 6,140 MW coming from natural gas-fired power plants (15 plants), 1,076 MW from fuel-oil supplied power plants (11 plants), 291 MW from SHP - Small Hydroelectric Plants (13 plants), and 2 MW from wind power plants (1 plant). In December 2010, Petrobras' generating park will have an installed capacity of 7,686 MW with the addition of three more gas-fired plants in Manaus and two small hydroelectric plants in Tocantins.

Determining environmental factors, as defined in the licensing process, are part of the actions implemented to favor the maintenance of air quality and improve the natural and social conditions in the region, including, most importantly: the real-time monitoring of atmospheric emissions of nitrogen and sulfur oxides (NOx and SOx); the 25-meter tall chimneys used to improve atmospheric dispersion; monthly monitoring of underground water quality via six wells; the collection and disposal of domestic and industrial effluents; the recovery of the vegetation cover; a risk management and emergency action plan; and a Technical Training Plan to qualify TEP operators and maintainers, in partnership with SENAI-BA.

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