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GRDA signs agreement with Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Americas for 495-MW combined-cycle unit


From the March 26, 2014 issue of Public Power Daily

Originally published March 26, 2014

By Jeannine Anderson
Editor
The Grand River Dam Authority in Oklahoma announced March 24 that it has signed a contract with Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Americas for the purchase of a 495-MW combined-cycle natural gas-fired generation unit, calling the deal one of the most important contract signings in GRDA's history.

The new unit, to be located at the Grand River Energy Center (formerly the GRDA Coal-Fired Complex), east of Chouteau, Okla., will have "the potential to be the most efficient of its kind in the United States," GRDA said.

The contract was signed on March 21 by Dan Sulllivan, GRDA's CEO and director of investments, and Yoshihiro Shiraiwa, president of Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Americas. The signing took place at the GRDA Engineering and Technology Center in Tulsa, Okla.
 
Yoshihiro Shiraiwa, president of Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Americas, left, and Grand River Dam Authority CEO Dan Sullivan shake hands after signing the contract. Photo courtesy of GRDA
"This is an historic agreement for both GRDA and Mitsubishi," said Sullivan. "This unit will be the first of its kind in the Western Hemisphere. It is state-of-the-art technology, and as a combined-cycle unit, it will operate very efficiently while providing low-cost, reliable electricity for GRDA customers for decades to come."

In a combined-cycle unit, natural gas is used to fuel a combustion turbine-generator and heat from that process produces steam to turn another steam turbine-generator. GRDA expects the new Unit 3 to be online by March 2017.

"Part of the GRDA board’s strategy is to reduce our reliance on coal," said Sullivan. "We can achieve some of that with this new facility. By burning natural gas from right here in Oklahoma, we will have a diversified generation portfolio that will continue to keep costs low for our customers."

Headquartered in Vinita, Okla., GRDA is a state-owned electric utility fully funded by revenues from its electricity and water sales. The agency, which has 500 employees, also manages 70,000 surface acres of lakes in the state, including Grand Lake, Lake Hudson and the W.R. Holway Reservoir. 
 

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