Indianapolis Power works on Petersburg retrofits, coal-to-gas conversions

Indianapolis Power & Light is well along on planned coal unit retirements at the Eagle Valley plant, coal-to-gas conversions at the Harding Street plant, and new emissions retrofits on its surviving coal plant, Petersburg.

This AES Corp. (NYSE: AES) unit filed on Dec. 21 at the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission for approval of certain costs related to these projects.

Bradley D. Scott, employed by AES US Services LLC as Senior Vice President, Power Supply for Indianapolis Power & Light, said in Dec. 21 testimony that as of this filing, IPL has total owned capacity of approximately 3,089 net MW (nominal summer rating for planning purposes). The generation capacity is located at four primary sites: Georgetown (Northwest Indianapolis), Harding Street Station (HS) (Southwest Indianapolis), Eagle Valley Station (EV) (Martinsville, IN) and Petersburg Station (Petersburg, IN).

  • IPL’s largest generating station is the four unit, coal-fired, 1,715-MW Petersburg Plant in Petersburg, Indiana. The Petersburg Station, located in close proximity to its Indiana coal supply, provides low cost generation to IPL’s customers. The units have a variety of environmental controls that are either already installed or under construction to allow the station to comply with SO2, NOX, Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) and particulate matter regulations. In particular this plant is being retrofitted with environmental compliance equipment already approved by the commission. This project is scheduled for completion by April 2016 in order to meet the MATS compliance deadline under a one-year deadline extension.
  • IPL’s Harding Street Station includes three natural gas-fired combustion turbines and is the location of an ongoing coal-to-gas refueling project approved by the commission. Because it is directly connected to the IPL load zone, the Harding Street Station serves an important role in IPL’s provision of reliable service. IPL has completed the refueling of two of the coal-fired units at Harding Street, Units 5 and 6, to operate using only natural gas. IPL commenced the refueling of HSS Unit 7 to natural gas in December 2015. This is the final step in eliminating all coal-fired generation at this plant, the reasonable least cost plan to comply with MATS and NPDES water rules. These refueling projects are scheduled for completion before summer 2016.
  • The 256-MW Eagle Valley Plant includes Eagle Valley Units 3-6, which are scheduled to be retired in April 2016 as part of IPL’s plan to comply with the EPA’s environmental mandates, including the MATS Rule. IPL is adding a 671-MW combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) facility at the Eagle Valley station. The project is on schedule and under the commission’s approved cost estimate. The CCGT is projected to be in-service by April 30, 2017.
  • The 150-MW natural gas-fired Georgetown Plant includes two gas turbines and continues to be used to meet IPL’s customers’ need for electricity.
  • IPL also has about 300 MW of wind generation secured under long-term Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) approved by the commission. In addition to this wind energy, IPL now purchases approximately 95 MW of energy from solar facilities located throughout its service territory pursuant to its Rate REP Tariff.

Scott noted that through a competitive solicitation process, IPL selected Indiana Water Partners, a joint venture between Bowen Engineering and Burns & McDonnell, as an engineering, procurement and construction EPC contractor for the refueling work for all three Harding Street units. 

Also supplying Dec. 21 testimony was Thomas W. Moore, employed by IPL as the Project Construction Manager with the Environmental Compliance Construction Projects (ECCP) Team for the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards Rule Compliance Project.

Moore wrote about the retrofit work at Petersburg: “Significant amounts of equipment commissioning and construction activities have occurred during this reporting period for the MATS Compliance Project. Petersburg Unit 1, Unit 2 and Unit 4 completed project tasks related to the start-up of new injection systems such as process testing, performance verification and reliability testing. Mechanical and Substantial Completion milestones were met and the operation and maintenance of those Units were turned over to the respective Petersburg plant teams.

“The major construction emphasis was placed on Unit 3. With the construction of the Unit 2 Pulse Jet Fabric Filter (‘PJFF’), the existing Electro-Static Precipitator (‘ESP’) for the Unit was demolished to make room for the Unit 3 PJFF. Foundation and structural support steel modifications were completed providing the framework for the new PJFF.

“In early June, the new and larger Booster Fans and Motors were placed into service along with two new auxiliary transformers, which were necessary to provide additional power to operate the larger equipment and the new control systems.

“During the past six-month period, the construction activities primarily involved the Unit 3 PJFF and the Unit injection systems. The Calcium Bromide Injection, Activated Carbon Injection (‘ACI’) and Sodium Based Sorbent (‘SBS’) Injection systems for Unit 3 have been completed and the Calcium Bromide and SBS systems have been placed into service. The ACI system is located in a section of new flue gas ductwork, which will not be operational until after the next planned unit outage in February 2016.

“With the shift of emphasis of the MATS Compliance Project to the completion of the scope for Unit 3, all forthcoming work will take place on Unit 3 systems and equipment. The next six (6) months will see the completion of all project construction and equipment tie-in to the existing configuration. The final construction outage for Unit 3, during February 2016, will provide the opportunity to complete any work requiring the generating unit to be off-line.

“IPL has incorporated the SBS Injection System into the MATS Compliance Project. The installation of this system is now an integral part of IPL’s compliance program for mercury, particulate matter and acid gases and is included for each of the four units at Petersburg. Construction of the equipment common to all four Units is complete and the SBS Injection System is operational for Units 1, 2, 3 and 4.”

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.