Wärtsilä will supply the reciprocating internal combustion engines (RICE) for an 18 MW expansion of an existing natural gas-fired plant in Farmington, New Mexico.

The buyer is the city of Farmington and the existing power plant was identified as the city owned-and-operated Bluffview Power Plant. According to a signed equipment supply contract, the contract is worth approximately $13.9 million. Wärtsilä equipment for the project, including the generator sets and auxiliary equipment, is expected to be delivered by January 2025.

The two Wärtsilä 34SG natural gas-fueled engines selected for this project are also capable of operating on biogas, synthetic methanol and a hydrogen blend.

MORE: Exploring the hidden value of reciprocating engines using sub-hourly grid modeling

Farmington Electric’s Bluffview Power Plant produces approximately 60 MW. It is a combined-cycle natural gas plant that was completed and commenced operation in May of 2005. The plant includes a natural gas-fired gas Combustion Turbine Generator (CTG) with a heat recovery steam generator (HRSG),
duct burner and steam turbine. The facility also includes cooling towers, circulating water pumps, sub-station, and supporting equipment to produce and deliver electricity

Wärtsilä said the new expansion will replace lost generating capacity following the closure of a coal-fired power plant. The last unit of the San Juan Generating Station, located in Farmington, was officially removed from service in September 2022.

The shutdown of San Juan Unit 4 followed the retirement of Unit 1 in June 2022. The coal-fired plant had four units but was reduced to two in 2017, with the closure of Units 2 and 3. The plant’s first unit was brought online in 1973.

Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM) is the majority owner of San Juan Generation Station, but the city of Farmington has a 5% stake. The city had aimed to keep the plant open, partnering with Enchant Energy for a carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) project

This post appeared first on Power Engineering.