Sri Lanka’s Chinese coal plant giving cheaper power: CEB engineers

May 03, 2013 (LBO) – A Chinese financed and built plant at Sri Lanka’s state-run Ceylon Electricity Board, is generating power at a lower cost and defects are being gradually rectified, officials of the utility’s engineers union said.

The coal plant is expected to generate about 1,800 to 1,900GigaWatts of energy this year, out of a total of 12,000GWh or a little less than originally expected partly due to the inability to run it at full load during the night off-peak due to system stability concerns.

Union officials said the plant had broken down a number of time after it was commissioned, especially when it was within the defect liability period, when such events were expected and engineers were also unused to the technology at first.

They said the CEB had experienced similar problems with new technology such as combined cycles when they were first commissioned.

Though the first 300Mw appeared to have broken down more than expected, it was becoming more reliable as time went on, they said.

The second 300MW plant is expected to be commissioned later in 2013 and the third by April or May 2014 they said. The experience gained in building the first plant will be used by project management teams, they said.