First of its kind in the western hemisphere …
Catoosa — With the help of Oklahoma’s robust inland waterway system, one of the most efficient electric generators in the nation will soon be part of the Grand River Dam Authority’s new Unit 3 combined cycle gas plant.
On Tuesday, February 23, GRDA’s new gas turbine, which will spin at the heart of the new Unit 3, arrived at the Tulsa Port of Catoosa. Manufactured by Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Americas (MHPSA) in Savannah, Georgia, the M501J model turbine is the first of its kind to be deployed in the western hemisphere.
“We’re very excited to bring this highly-efficient turbine into our generation portfolio,” said GRDA Chief Executive Officer Dan Sullivan. “The construction of Unit 3, and the efficiencies it will bring, is a way to honor the long-term commitment our customers have made in GRDA.”
The M501J has the capability to produce 327 megawatts (MW) of electricity. Onsite at GRDA, it will be
fueled by Oklahoma natural gas and operate as part of a combined cycle generator, in concert with a steam turbine, also manufactured by Mitsubishi. Together, the turbines will give GRDA Unit 3 the capability to produced 495 MW.
“We at Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems are proud to be an integral part of GRDA’s expansion at the Grand River Energy Center,” said Dave Walsh, President and CEO of MHPSA. “The M501J, gas turbine offers the largest output and the highest performance among all gas turbines in commercial operation. When commissioned at Unit 3 in 2017, this turbine will be the 28th J-Series to go commercial, as well as the largest and most efficient single unit in operation in the western hemisphere.”
Sullivan also recognized that bringing the turbine, and many other components for the new facility, would have been difficult without the existence of the McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System (MKARNS) and the Tulsa Port of Catoosa.
“These are tremendous assets for Oklahoma,” said Sullivan. “For GRDA, the waterway and port provided the only economical way to transport this turbine to Oklahoma.”
The Tulsa Port of Catoosa is one of the largest and most-inland ports in the country.
“The waterway is an integral part of the economy and transportation network for our region,” said Bob Portiss, Port Director, Tulsa Port of Catoosa. “We are proud that the MKARNS and the capabilities of the Port of Catoosa were so beneficial to bringing this oversize cargo to our friends at GRDA.”
Headquartered in Vinita, GRDA is Oklahoma’s state-owned electric utility; fully funded by revenues from electric and water sales instead of taxes. Each day, GRDA strives to be an “Oklahoma agency of excellence” by focusing on the 5 E’s: electricity, economic development, environmental stewardship, employees and efficiency.
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