AGL Energy will spend $295 million on a new 210 MW reciprocating engine power station to be built alongside the company’s Torrens Island Power Station site near Adelaide.
The Barker Inlet Power Station will replace two of the four Torrens A turbines which AGL intends to gradually phase out by 1 July 2019.
AGL Managing Director and CEO Andy Vesey said the decision to build the Barker Inlet Power Station reflects the company’s commitment to creating a secure energy system for its South Australian customers.
“Torrens A is now 50 years old. Our decision in June 2016 to defer its previously planned mothballing reflected the importance of maintaining security of supply in South Australia following the withdrawal at short notice of other thermal power stations,” Mr Vesey said, adding that the four Torrens B turbines will continue to operate as normal.
“We are delighted that we are now able to confirm that Barker Inlet Power Station will be developed, improving reliability and security of Supply in South Australia using modern, responsive technology that is more fuel efficient and less carbon intensive than pre-existing pant.”
The company’s Executive General Manager Doug Jackson said AGL has identified reciprocating engines as the most flexible, efficient and cost-effective synchronous generation capacity, well suited to the specific needs of the SA market.
“Barker Inlet Power Station will comprise 12 reciprocating engines capable of generating approximately 18 MW of output each and operating at high efficiency with a lower heat rate than other forms of fast-start plant currently available,” Mr Jackson added.
“These units are capable of operating at full capacity within five minutes of start, providing a rapid response to changes in renewable generation supply.”
According to the company, construction of the Barker Inlet Power Station is expected to commence in the third quarter of 2017, with the plant to be fully operational by early 2019.