Africa|Business|Coal|Efficiency|Energy|Eskom|Gas|Gas-to-power|Generators|Infrastructure|LNG|Ports|Power|Projects|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|SECURITY|Solar|Technology|Transnet|Turbines|Solutions|Environmental|Infrastructure|Turbines|Operations
Africa|Business|Coal|Efficiency|Energy|Eskom|Gas|Gas-to-power|Generators|Infrastructure|LNG|Ports|Power|Projects|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|SECURITY|Solar|Technology|Transnet|Turbines|Solutions|Environmental|Infrastructure|Turbines|Operations

Technology giant gearing up for South Africa’s gas programme

GE Vernova’s Gas Power sub-Saharan Africa regional sales director Vuyelwa Mahanyele

GE Vernova’s Gas Power sub-Saharan Africa regional sales director Vuyelwa Mahanyele

6th September 2023


Font size: - +

GE Vernova is gearing itself up for South Africa’s long-awaited gas programme  which is expected to be rolled out  in the coming months as South Africa accelerates initiatives aimed at ending ongoing loadshedding.

South Africa’s Integrated Resource Plan of 2019 has allocated 3 000 MW to gas-to-power for introduction into the country’s electricity mix between 2024 and 2027 and the Ministerial determination required for a procurement process to proceed is now in place.

GE Vernova has been a strong advocate of the introduction of gas to power in South Africa both to gradually replace coal capacity that is being retired as well as to introduce the flexibility that such generators offer to complement variable renewables plants, which are poised to become a significant part of the future electricity mix.

GE Vernova’s Gas Power sub-Saharan Africa regional sales director Vuyelwa Mahanyele  believes that the combination of renewables and gas offers the fastest pathway for South Africa’s decarbonisation, whilst advocating for MW to MW replacement of coal to gas switching at Eskom’s aged power stations as the best option to ensure energy security and environmental sustainability, enabling South Africa to achieve its NDC goals (Nationally Determined Contributions) and emission reduction targets. High efficient gas to coal switching offers differential carbon emission reduction of 60% +. 

Both Richards Bay, in KwaZulu-Natal, and Coega, in the Eastern Cape, have been earmarked as gas hubs, with State-owned companies Transnet and the Central Energy Fund progressing plans for common-user gas import and distribution infrastructure at ports in the two regions.

However, there is also potential for the initial programme to be site agnostic, particularly given that gas infrastructure already exists in Mpumalanga, as well as the advanced planning under way for the creation of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in Matola, Mozambique. GE Vernova is currently working with various IPPs, both large and smaller-scale, on possible projects. 

Mahanyele indicates that GE Vernova is committed  in deploying its largest and most efficient turbine technology, known as 9HA. While the solution has not yet been implemented in Africa, GE Vernova believes the scale of the South African gas programme is well suited to what is currently regarded as the company’s  most efficient H-class combined-cycle power plant. Today, the units have accumulated more than 1.9 million operating hours including in developing markets such as Pakistan and Malaysia, which have a similar grid capacity to South Africa.

The first 9HA unit was rolled out in Bouchain, France, in partnership with Électricité de France (EDF), where the combined-cycle plant is producing stable electricity and enabling EDF to respond quickly to grid fluctuations, thus paving the way for greater use of renewable energy.

Mahanyele believes that the South African programme should also prioritise combined-cycle gas technology for both cost competitiveness; normalizing the high cost of LNG import and offering the lowest emissions for Gas projects .

From a cost perspective, GE Vernova argues that the higher load factors (baseload and high mid-merit operations) associated with combined-cycle generators offers competitive tariffs and ensure LNG Infrastructure bankability given that initial plants will be based on dollar-denominated LNG.

She argues there is greater scope to secure competitive fuel prices if the South African plants operate within high mid-merit or baseload parameters, as the gas demand from plants operating with peaking-type profiles could be too low or uncertain to provide the IPP with any negotiating power with fuel providers.

From an efficiency perspective, meanwhile, GE Vernova believes a higher load factor will enable a turbine such as the 9HA to operate at optimal levels. The turbines are also hydrogen-ready, should there be a requirement to convert to hydrogen in future.

That said, Mahanyele stresses that GE Vernova also has solutions that are able to compete in the peaking market that are part of the aeroderivative segment . These smaller units are also being deployed as part of hybrid power stations that include solar, wind, batteries, and gas.

“The end-to-end value chain of gas-to-power projects present an opportunity to build out large infrastructure projects, which will create jobs, development new and critical skills and build industry that is needed to drive the economic growth of the country,” Mahanyele concludes.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter


Latest News

Magazine round up | 01 December 2023
Magazine round up | 01 December 2023
1st December 2023



At TGOOD, we pride ourselves on our passionate team of professionals. As a world leader in pre-fabricated outdoor electric substation buildings, we...

Immersive Technologies
Immersive Technologies

Immersive Technologies is the world's largest, proven and tested supplier of simulator training solutions to the global resources industry.


Latest Multimedia

sponsored by

Photo of Martin Creamer
Jupiter Mines, Copper 360 and DRDGold make headlines
1st December 2023
Magazine round up | 01 December 2023
Magazine round up | 01 December 2023
1st December 2023

Option 1 (equivalent of R125 a month):

Receive a weekly copy of Creamer Media's Engineering News & Mining Weekly magazine
(print copy for those in South Africa and e-magazine for those outside of South Africa)
Receive daily email newsletters
Access to full search results
Access archive of magazine back copies
Access to Projects in Progress
Access to ONE Research Report of your choice in PDF format

Option 2 (equivalent of R375 a month):

All benefits from Option 1
Access to Creamer Media's Research Channel Africa for ALL Research Reports, in PDF format, on various industrial and mining sectors including Electricity; Water; Energy Transition; Hydrogen; Roads, Rail and Ports; Coal; Gold; Platinum; Battery Metals; etc.

Already a subscriber?

Forgotten your password?







sq:0.14 0.174s - 93pq - 2rq
Subscribe Now