Friday, September 28, 2018

New Zealand: 25 MW Te Ahi O Maui Geothermal Power Plant Enters Commissioning Phase

NZ’s newest geothermal power plant is full steam ahead (News Release)

Te Ahi O Maui geothermal power plant, in Kawerau, has entered the commissioning phase. Once fully operational, the plant will generate around 25 MW of baseload renewable energy.

Initial heating up of the plant began this week, with the first synchronisation of the plant to the national grid expected to occur in the coming days. A reliability run will follow an extensive testing regime, which is being conducted with Ormat Technologies Inc.

The Te Ahi O Maui facility consists of three geothermal production wells, two geothermal injection wells, an Ormat binary power station similar to many others already in operation in New Zealand and around the world, and a transmission connection to the national grid.

Consents allow for the extraction of 15,000 tonnes of geothermal fluid daily from the Kawerau geothermal reservoir, for the next 35 years. Nearly 100% of this fluid will be injected back into the reservoir, ensuring the operation is sustainable.

Initially considered a 22 MW plant, the Te Ahi O Maui plant is expected to achieve around 25 MW – enough to power over 25,000 average homes. The increase in output has improved the plant construction cost, including drilling, to $5.45m/MW.