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Power supply tight due to another problem at Ho-Ping plant: Taipower

2017/08/24 15:21:59

CNA file photo

Taipei, Aug. 24 (CNA) The electricity supply in Taiwan is expected to remain tight on Thursday as a result of yet another malfunction at the Ho-Ping Power Plant in Hualien County the night before, the state-run Taiwan Power Co. (Taipower) said.

On Wednesday night, a furnace pipe at the No. 2 generator at the coal-fired power plant broke and it is not yet clear when it will be repaired, said Cheng Yu-tsai (鄭有財), Taipower's deputy superintendent for central coordination.

The problem is likely to cause a drop of 630,000 kW to 640,000 kW in the country's electricity supply on Thursday, which will take the reserves below 6 percent, Cheng said.

The Ho-Ping Power Plant has been encountering a series of problems since last month, beginning with the collapse of one of its transmission towers during Typhoon Nesat on July 29.

With the tower out of service, two of the plant's generators that produced about 1.3 million kW of power went offline. Two days after the plant resumed full operation on Aug. 13, one of the two generators broke down.

Meanwhile, a damaged generator at Talin thermal power plant in Kaohsiung has been repaired and reconnected to the national power grid, Cheng said, adding that by Thursday afternoon the generator was expected to reach full capacity of 500,000 kW.

He said electricity consumption had dropped over the past two days as the temperature cooled somewhat during the passage of Tropical Storm Hato close to Taiwan.

On Wednesday, the highest level of consumption was 34.50 million kWs but with temperatures rising again, consumption was expected to jump to 35.50 million kW on Thursday, leaving an operating reserve margin of 5.5 percent, Cheng said. Therefore, an orange alert was likely to be maintained throughout the day, he said.

Under Taipower's five-color electricity supply warning system, a green light means operating reserve margins are above 10 percent, a yellow light represents power reserves of between 10 percent and 6 percent, while an orange light indicates that the reserves are below 6 percent.

A red alert means that the power reserves have dropped below 900,000 kW, while a black alert indicates that reserves have fallen to less than 500,000 kW and power rationing has become necessary.

(By Huang Li-yun and Evelyn Kao)