Wisconsin Public Service in early stages of Fox Energy Center rehab project

On March 5, representatives from Wisconsin Public Service Corp. (WPSC) and General Electric International met at the Fox Energy Center to conduct the “Order Definition Meeting” for a plant upgrade project, said WPSC in an April 29 quarterly update filed at the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin.

The commission in October 2014 had approved this project.

At that March 5 meeting, twelve members of the contractor’s project team worked collaboratively with WPSC to: confirm the project scope; discuss high-level schedules regarding equipment procurement, design and outage execution; review preliminary schematics for certain combustion turbine accessories; align contractor deliverables with customer expectations; and perform a site walk down to inform ongoing engineering.

The contractor has established a target date of the fourth quarter of 2015 for the delivery of: the first set of advanced gas path (turbine section) components; the first set of DLN 2.6+ combustion system hardware; and the first accessory (fuel gas) module. This equipment is proposed for installation on Unit 1 beginning in April 2016.

The minor source air construction permit application was found complete by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources on Feb. 21. On March 11, a permit writer was assigned to process the application. Currently, the application remains in a “requested” status.

Under the schedule from here:

  • Construction is projected to begin on Unit 1 on (or about) April 4, 2016.
  • Construction is projected to begin on Unit 2 on (or about) April 3, 2017.

The anticipated in-service dates are:

  • Unit 1 – June 1, 2016
  • Unit 2 – June 1, 2017

The estimated cost of the proposed project is $68,076,000, excluding allowance for funds used during construction (AFUDC). As of March 31, 2015, actual project costs of $38,424.84 had been incurred, excluding AFUDC.

The Fox Energy Center is a dual-fuel, combined-cycle facility consisting of two GE combustion turbine (CT) generators, arranged in a two-by-two-by-one configuration with two Nooter/Eriksen heat recovery steam generators (HRSG), one Toshiba condensing steam turbine generator, and associated plant equipment. Each CT-generator set includes a GE model 7FB.014 CT, a GE model 7FH2(B)5 hydrogen-cooled generator, and various subsystems. Each CT is capable of operating using either natural gas or No. 2 distillate fuel oil. Because of fuel cost, natural gas is currently used as the primary fuel, with fuel oil used as a backup fuel. Each HRSG is equipped with supplementary natural gas-fired duct burners manufactured by the Coen Co.

The nameplate capacity of the Fox Energy Center is 593 MW, with a summer rating of approximately 550 MW. During summer conditions and when operating at its design point, the net capacity of the combined-cycle facility is approximately 500 MW, with an additional 50 MW of peaking capacity available from operation of duct-firing facilities.

The planned project consists of the conversion, modification, and upgrade of the “hot section” of each CT from its current configuration, referred to as GE model number 7FB.0l, to an advanced technology having a design common to GE 7FA.04 and 7FA.OS models. GE 7FA series turbine models are much more common than those currently in use at the Fox Energy Center, and are better supported by GE.

Wisconsin Public Service separately applied Jan. 21 at the commission for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity to build about 400 MW of capacity through a new Unit 3 at the Fox Energy Center. The proposed facility will consist of a single new nominal 400-MW net natural gas combined cycle plant in a “one-on-one” (1×1) configuration, which includes one combustion turbine generator and one steam turbine generator.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.