NLMK Group, an international steelmaking company with operations in Russia, the USA and the European Union, has begun hot testing of its new turbine generator unit No. 5 at its Cogeneration Plant in Lipetsk. Once commissioned the new generator, which has a capacity of 60 MW, will improve the reliability of the energy supply, reduce energy procurement costs by 3% and increase the share of in-house power generation from 53% to 59% of total energy consumption.
The new turbine generator replaces a unit with a similar capacity launched in 1958, which has come to the end of its life cycle. The outgoing turbine generator was equipped with a hydrogen cooling system, whereas the replacement is cooled using cold air, which makes it safer to operate and more reliable. While the overhaul was underway, an additional quantity of energy was purchased in order to meet the needs of the Lipetsk site.
The project was launched in Q2 2016, and the unit is expected to reach design capacity in February. NLMK Engineering, one of the leading design institutes in the Russian steel sector, is the general designer of the project. The total investment in the project exceeded 1.8 billion rubles.
Sergey Chebotarev, NLMK VP for Energy, said: “This project enhances the safety and stability of the Cogeneration Plant, and reduces the operating costs for electricity and heat generation. This will enable us to increase the efficiency of our energy-generating facilities, and increase the share of in-house power generation from 53% to a record 59%.”
The total on-line generation capacity of the Lipetsk site is currently 522 MW. Electricity is produced by the Cogeneration Plant, the Recovery Cogeneration Plant and by two top-pressure recovery turbines (TRTs). The main fuel for NLMK’s Cogeneration Plant and Recovery Cogeneration Plant is blast furnace and coke-oven gas. The top-pressure recovery turbines are used to generate electrical power through efficient use of blast furnace gas overpressure, without any need to burn fuel. In 2017 more than 84% of electricity generated at the plant resulted from the recovery of by-product gas. (NLMK/Ukrainian metal)