Could Gas-Fired Mini Power Plants Support U.S. Renewables?
March 20, 2018
By: Mark A. Davidson
The Financial Times Limited recently reported that in England, small gas-fired generation is being used to support both conventional and renewable resources in short notice outage and load following situations. The gas fired units are 6MW in size and are relatively inexpensive at approximately $7 million apiece.
British utilities are using the mini-generators in various configurations to accommodate forced outage situations, rather than turning to larger more expensive peaking units. The nimble generators can be brought on line in minutes to handle outages or load swings for short periods of time.
Given the current advantageous pricing of natural gas and ongoing additions of intermittent resources in the U.S., these types of generators, along with additional storage options, could be used to smooth demand and support the continued domestic move toward increased renewables.
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