Medupi produces its first power

Medupi produces its first power

2015-03-02 12:17

Johannesburg - The first power was produced out of Medupi’s unit 6 on Monday at 11:03, making it the first of the Medupi power station’s six units to be synchronised, according to Eskom.

Synchronisation, or first power, is the process whereby the generator in the unit is electrically connected to the national power grid, in such a way that its power is perfectly aligned with all the other generators to generate and deliver electricity into the national power grid.

According to Eskom CEO Tshediso Matona this is the final stage marking "an exciting milestone" towards full commercial power.

“Today, we celebrate the achievement with team Medupi. The electricity flowing into the grid marks a new beginning. Within the next three months, South Africa will see Medupi unit 6’s full potential of 794MW being fed into the South African national grid," said Matona.

"I congratulate team Medupi for their efforts in achieving this important milestone for South Africa.”

READ: Eskom: What is a tight electricity system?

In anticipation of commercial operation, a power station manager has been appointed.

Eskom said over the past six years a core set of people were trained and developed to operate the cutting edge technology that makes Medupi "unique in the world".
“Approximately 350 men and women are waiting to join the force of South Africans making history when the unit gets operational. While unit 6 is the first of Medupi’s six units, it should be noted that all required auxiliary services for the entire power station are ready to ensure that Medupi’s total output of 4 764MW is fully synchronised to the South African power grid,” said  Matona.

For Minister of Public Enterprises Lynne Brown the synchronisation of unit 6 at Medupi is a step towards full power generation of 794MW and, therefore, a step closer to alleviating some of the energy challenges currently faced by South Africa.

"This will contribute significantly to South Africa’s and the region’s economy in the long run,” said Brown.

“We recognise that this is only the beginning, but I am confident that achieving this significant milestone will sustain the dedication and commitment of the Eskom team as they work towards the completion of the project."

ALSO READ: Eskom hopes to avoid load shedding

  • Alain Craven - 2015-03-02 12:19

    Excuse my ignorance. Its producing power, but not into the grid? Why? What needs to happen still?

      Bradley Duncan - 2015-03-02 12:23

      It can now be tested fully to ensure all is in order before they ramp it up and connect to the grid. Like running in a car engine, takes time and care. As they say, it needs to be synchronized which is critical.

      Made Inthe-South - 2015-03-02 12:42

      Why are Medupi and Kusile 5 years late[Operationally]?Because of violent labour strikes and faulty welding to the boilers,the boilers that Hitachi Power Africa[ZANC owned through Chancellor House] had a R38 Billion contract for.That resulted in them flying in overseas welders to do it over.And adding to cost.?Google it Proudly brought to you by the ZANC Alliance[Of which Numsa was a part] MEDUPI AND KUSILE CURRENTLT R40 BILLION OVER BUDGET

      Edward Spainell - 2015-03-02 13:20

      It's producing power and pushing that power onto the grid, but it's not running at the full 794MW capacity because they are still testing that it is running stable and smoothly. It's like that line in the new car manual that says don't do full rpm dropped-clutch starts for the first 10000km to allow the engine to wear in properly. I know we don't obey that, but Eskom does.

      Joe Ma - 2015-03-02 14:26

      "I congratulate team Medupi for their efforts in achieving this important milestone for South Africa.” - only 5 years late and 10's of billions over budget. Yeah, lets give everyone a bonus for a job well done ~ sarcasm. Before we pop out the champers, lets get this puppy on the grid first so that we can start seeing actual results. In reference to Bradley, my car is worth nothing while idling at the workshop, I need it on the road.

      Scouter Four-One - 2015-03-02 17:29

      Eskom clearly expects its paying users to be clambering over themselves to congratulate the 'Medulpi Team' for having produced a spark of electricity(which is about it all this amounts to in the overall scheme of things). Eskom expects one and all to overlook the programme over-run by one or two years, a hugely over spent budget, crappy local workmanship and lack of engineering skills and a non-existent/effective Project Management - but SA must still all bow down and pay grateful homage to this chaotic mess. No hope, whatsoever.

  • Truth24 - 2015-03-02 12:33

    So no load shedding today then. Great.

  • Gqibityala Sabata - 2015-03-02 12:34

    Thank you to the African National Congress for making it a possibility!!

      Graeme Smith - 2015-03-02 12:39

      Years late and billions over on to the ANC!

      Mark Daub - 2015-03-02 12:50

      Your standards are very low. Have some pride in yourself man!

      Mawethu Mathipa - 2015-03-02 12:51

      Where have you been Sabata?Medupi should have been up & running four years ago.I doubt if it's a good story to tell.

      Jaapie Bopape - 2015-03-02 13:37

      Oh Boy! another thick one!

      Made Inthe-South - 2015-03-02 13:57

      And a billion or more rand earned by Chancellor House in the process,through their 25% stake in Hitachi Power Africa

      Joe Ma - 2015-03-02 15:40

      Only 10 years late! Eskom under the Apartheid government estimated we only had enough capacity until 2008. They were spot on almost 20 years earlier. Only problem was that the African National Congress had their heads to far up the bums to reaction quickly enough. Only once we faced complete blackouts they woke up.

      Joe Coetzee - 2015-03-02 16:42

      Well it is not up and running yet so bit premature. When it contributes the full 700 mw then you can talk. So far it is all hype. Given ESCOM and ANC history of incompetence and corruption I see a broken generator in the future. And we all know Jan van Riebeeck will be blamed.

      Jan Van Riebeeck - 2015-03-02 17:27

      Yep its getting to be a bit last week, this whole scapegoat palaver. But let us hope that this additional power will actually be deployed in South Africa and not in the neighbourhoods.

  • Marco Duvenhage - 2015-03-02 12:37

    In an alternating current electric power system, synchronization is the process of matching the speed and frequency of a generator or other source to a running network. An AC generator cannot deliver power to an electrical grid unless it is running at the same frequency as the network. If two segments of a grid are disconnected, they cannot exchange AC power again until they are brought back into exact synchronization.

      Sickup Andfed - 2015-03-02 14:05

      As has been posted before and soon to be deleted again. DC= Direct current AC= Alternating current ANC= Absolutely no current

      Kevin Jones - 2015-03-02 15:30

      Marco less than 1% of the population will understand what you just said. They only understand "free power" not AC power or DC power, I am afraid.

  • Donni Smith - 2015-03-02 12:37

    Until some or other excuse is found to introduce loadshedding! Or to down tools at Medupi!

  • pierre.calitz - 2015-03-02 12:38

    Unit 6 should have started up almost 2 years back!!!!! So there is nothing to celebrate about!!!!!!!!!!!!! Pathetic!!!

      Andrew Nieuwmeyer - 2015-03-02 13:02

      The last coal power station Eskom built, Majuba, took 13 years to complete. The proposed 5 year schedule for first power from Medupi,the largest dry cooled coal power station in the world, was always highly optimistic.

      Jan Van Riebeeck - 2015-03-02 14:08

      More generation and less transformation.

      Made Inthe-South - 2015-03-02 14:26

      5 years back Pierre.It is 5 years behind schedule

  • Godfrey N. Zihlwele - 2015-03-02 12:39

    Give it three months after its full sync and something very expensive will be broken and we will be back to square 1

  • Stephen Sage Wiseman - 2015-03-02 12:43

    4 years late and 5 years to go

  • Victor Ndabenhle Mkhaliphi - 2015-03-02 13:06

    Whilst long overdue, Well done Eskom. I hope the other six units will be synchronized timeously and efficiently. Managing projects of this magnitude brings a lot of challenges and delays.

  • Victor Ndabenhle Mkhaliphi - 2015-03-02 13:07

    ...five units...

  • magasha.rasemana - 2015-03-02 13:17

    Well done!! 5 units to go...

  • Mokone Maliboho Kabi - 2015-03-02 13:32

    thank you less chances of load shredding

  • Lerato Manana - 2015-03-02 13:39

    this is really a good story to tell. even though it's overdue.

  • Stephan Du Plessis - 2015-03-02 13:39

    Woohoo, only four years late, go ahead, celebrate!

  • Brendan Cluley - 2015-03-02 13:40

    And? Country is still in the dark!!

  • Suren Gobindram - 2015-03-02 13:42

    Congratulations for what? Below average achievment? What a pathetic role model the govt is to celebrate mediocrity.

  • konstabel.koekemoer - 2015-03-02 13:53

    While this is good news it is nothing to brag about. It is like celebrating a pupil that has passed one single subject after repeating matric three times. The one unit will not be enough to totally avoid load shedding this winter.

      Jan Van Riebeeck - 2015-03-02 14:08

      Or applauding a fish because it swims.

  • william.liebenberg.7 - 2015-03-02 14:01

    Okay african time.

  • King Zamo Ngubane - 2015-03-02 15:00

    Well done team Medupi....indeed the future is bright (with electricity). Critics will always be sure they will look for something else to criticize (that's their job, no wonder they are like this....).

      Whiz Bang - 2015-03-02 15:10

      Yes well done Medupi!!! Only 5 years late and also means more free electric for the illegal connectors.

  • Kevin Jones - 2015-03-02 15:28

    This is the problem I have. 10's of billions over budget 3 years late and we are congratulating people. This is a disgrace. If this were the private sector the contractors would have spent the rest of their life in court. We should not be congratulating anyone, especially under these circumstances. In doing so you are lowering the level of excellence that 65 billion should buy us. This is our (tax payer's) money, yes the mere 5-8 million of us paying tax, it's our money you have squandered and wasted with your ineptitude and incompetence. So no I dont congratulate any of you. I expect you to be able to produce power after 6 years and 50 + billion on a 3 year 15 billion project. On another point, how far is the process to repair the silo that fell down 4 months ago. I will bet it has not started to be rebuilt yet.

  • Simangaliso Sithole - 2015-03-02 17:06

    Medupi is a drop in the ocean... Wont make any difference

  • andre.matthee.545 - 2015-03-02 17:52

    How can this guys be proud of somethings that millions of rand over budget and years late. Just shoe incompetents and no congratulations is necessary. Surely a million rands party with Johnny Walker blue will be next on the cards. The bar is set so low.

  • Henry Kruger - 2015-03-02 18:47

    The problem in Africa is standards in general. The majority of people accept poor standards. What is said is to accept a poor standard to day is to make it the norm tomorrow, and so spiral to lower standards across the board. We need to be pushing for excellence in everything that we do. But we squabble about the rule book and what we get out of it.

  • Oscar Bodlela - 2015-03-02 19:06

    At least we must appreciate even though this was long overdue. Well done SA.

  • Sammy Genaro Phalady - 2015-03-02 19:07

    Will he get a bonus, for getting unit 6 up? Zanc is boring

  • Musa Sabelo - 2015-03-02 19:11

    We do not give a backside produce about it!

  • Riaan Kriek - 2015-03-02 19:48

    Too little too late. SA need 4 or 5 Nedupi's to solve the problem. Watch the maintenance cost spin out of control with all the tenderpreneurs in action. Coal fired gravy train, the African way.

  • Marga Odendaal - 2015-03-02 20:06

    Well done to all the engineers involved in Medupi. Black, White, Coloured and Indian. Male, Female, Young and Old. With your motto of "how can I help you to do what you need to do To achieve what we need to achieve" you long ago forgot to look at each other's skin colour. That is why you are recognised and receive accolades from organisations all over the world.

      Beatrix Rode - 2015-03-04 09:50

      Lekker dof ne Marga - die ANC gaan nie vir jou enige van daardie miljoene gee wat hulle uit die deal gemaak het nie - of gaan hulle? Is dit dalk hoekom jy hulle so besing?

  • Musa Sabelo - 2015-03-02 20:26

    Thank you Magda, that's the spirit, You go gal!

  • Jeff Potgieter - 2015-03-03 13:17

    congradulations and billions over spent and 5 years late what an achievement for there small brains, cant get nothing right on there own except making a plan for there pockets.

  • Jasper Sterling - 2015-03-03 13:34

    794MW, awesome, more than half way their guys...Nkandla almost fully powered now...only tuckshop, home theatre and tennis courts left (ok, ok, maybe tennis courts not really that critical).

  • Ewald van den Heever - 2015-03-03 16:23

    Finally, What only three years late? But hey, well done, give yourselves a pat on the back For MR Brown - Rephrase - It could have contributed to the economy three years ago, now, we are just running to keep up, and maybe put some plasters on the big bleeders.

  • CyberDog Breath - 2015-03-04 15:35

    YAY Let's celebrate, they have added 794MW of the possible 4764MW but will still have a shortage, as the current shortage is 10000MW+ So there will still be a shortage of over 5000MW even after the full power station with all 6 generators come online. I don't get it, why is this reason to celebrate ? Celebrating failure and mediocrity is just sad and pathetic.

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