“We made a promise – and we kept it!”: Ural Turbine Works and ROTEC Holding complete modernization of the largest power plant in Mongolia

19 January 2021

Russian specialists completed the most ambitious modernization program of Mongolia's power system in the past 30 years, commissioning nearly 600 MW of power capacity (60 % of the country's total power generation).

ROTEC and the Ural Turbine Works, commissioned the first two power units as far back as “in peacetime” – in the autumn-winter of 2019 The third power unit was installed and commissioned under the different conditions of the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic and its strict quarantine rules. Yet, despite all the restrictions, the work was completed exactly according to schedule on 15 October 2020 – just ahead of the heating season. After a successful 72-hour test, the plant’s last (fourth) power unit began generating power into the grid on 18 January 2021, ahead of the winter peak in energy consumption in the Mongolian energy system.

The dates when the power facilities were commissioned are quite symbolic, too – Mongolian power engineers received new turbines from Russian machine builders for the New Year and Christmas, exactly as promised, and the modernization of the power plant was finally completed on the eve of the Mongolian New Year (a traditional holiday for the country – Tsagaan Sar).

More than 120 000 households, social facilities and industrial enterprises in Mongolia now have a reliable source of heat and light. The plant’s new units have a service life of at least 40 years, during which each of the turbines will save up to $19.5 million on fuel every year, discharging 10 % less emissions into the atmosphere. The efficiency of the new machines has been increased by 9 %, and their flexibility by 40 %. More efficient turbines will reduce coal consumption down to 100,000 tons per year.

As the Prime Minister of Mongolia U. Khurelsukh noted during his visit to the new power units of Ulaanbaatar CHPP-4, “Energy is a fundamental sector of the country's economic security, which provides an opportunity for sustainable social development and creating comfortable living conditions for the Mongolian people. The Mongolian government is working to develop the energy sector, which has become the key to social and economic development.”

To maintain high rates of economic growth (in 2019, Mongolia's economy grew by 7.3 % (by comparison, China's economy grew by 6.1 %. According to the World Bank's forecast, Mongolia's economy will quickly recover from the pandemic and grow by 5 percent over the next two years), the country needs to greatly increase its own electricity production.

As the Russian Ambassador to Mongolia, Iskander Azizov, noted: “In the face of the coronavirus pandemic, the employees of ROTEC and the Ural Turbine Works have excelled themselves. They have once again demonstrated their reliability, high level of responsibility, world-class professionalism and ability to overcome difficulties on the way to achieving their goals. I have no doubt that their remarkable efforts, their fulfilment of all their obligations will be greatly appreciated both in our homeland and by our Mongolian partners...”

The Ural Turbine Works (UTW) designed and manufactured the main generating equipment for the modernization of four power units. ROTEC specialists performed a comprehensive design of new capacities, developed technical and design estimate documentation, installed and commissioned new equipment. NPO “ELSIB” supplied three new generators of increased capacity and modernized one generator for the UTW turbines.

Mongolian Energy Minister N. Tavinbekh stressed: “The capacity of the turbine unit to be commissioned will reduce the importation of electricity into the country and, accordingly, reduce budget expenditures. Before the commissioning of the 3rd turbine unit, the volume of imported electricity was 250 MW. But thanks to the start-up of the new machine, it will not exceed 110 MW.”

Mikhail Lifshitz, Chairman of the Board of Directors of ROTEC and the Ural Turbine Works, emphasized: “This project has shown the highest level of our united team and colossal potential for further cooperation. We keep our word. Since 2015, when we completed construction of the first power unit at CHPP-4, the technologies of ROTEC and the Ural Turbine Works have helped increase the energy independence of Mongolia and its sustainable economic development. Together with our Mongolian colleagues, we have successfully overcome all obstacles, from difficult technical problems to the consequences of the global pandemic. Tens of thousands of households, social facilities and industrial enterprises in Mongolia have received heat and light. Another wonderful page in the history of Mongolia’s energy supply has been written. I am convinced that a solid foundation for our cooperation will become a guarantee of success in all subsequent projects, regardless of their complexity.”

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