US firm wins Al Kahfah solar tracker package

23 February 2024

Riyadh-headquartered Acwa Power and India's Larsen & Toubro (L&T) have selected the US-headquartered Nextracker to provide solar trackers for the Al Kahfah solar photovoltaic (PV) power plant in Saudi Arabia.

The project is one of three utility-scale solar projects being jointly developed by Acwa Power and its partner, Water & Electricity Holding Company (Badeel). as part of the kingdom's National Renewable Energy Programme (NREP).

The US solar tracking manufacturer will supply its all-terrain NX Horizon-XTR product for the project located in the kingdom's Central Province.  

The area the solar plant will occupy underpinned the choice to deploy Nextracker's smart solar tracker systems for the Al Kahfah project.

The location is dominated by a hilly, hard-soil land surface that would otherwise typically require a combination of explosives and grading machines to flatten.

Nextracker’s all-terrain solar tracker system can conform to the natural terrain to reduce the need for costly land grading while significantly reducing environmental impact, Acwa Power and L&T said.

The project is understood to be the largest deployment of Nextracker's NX Horizon-XTR solar tracking technology in a single order.

Nextracker founder and chief executive Dan Shugar said the project bolsters the Saudi government's leadership in energy transition and the dominance of solar technology in driving the transition to renewables in the region.

L&T is understood to be the project's engineering, procurement and construction contractor.

PIF solar projects

Acwa Power and Badeel signed the power-purchase agreements with Saudi Power Procurement Company to develop and operate the three projects in May last year.

In addition to the Al Kahfah solar project, the developer team will also develop the 2,000MW Al Rass and 1,125MMW Saad 2 solar PV projects.

The projects are estimated to cost a combined SR12.8bn ($3.4bn).

The projects are expected to reach financial close after they have satisfied the conditions precedent for senior loans drawdown, as a recent Acwa Power bourse filing has indicated.

The banks that agreed to provide senior debt financing of SR8.6bn ($2.3bn) for the three projects include:

  • Banque Saudi Fransi (local)
  • HSBC (UK)
  • Mizuho Bank (Japan)
  • Riyad Bank (local)
  • Saudi Awwal Bank (local)
  • Saudi National Bank (local)
  • Standard Chartered Bank (UK)

The financing duration is 27.75 years. The project debt financing amount is non-recourse to Acwa Power, which owns a 50.1% equity in the three projects.

Its partner, the Public Investment Fund (PIF) subsidiary Badeel, owns the remaining 49.9% equity in the projects.

The three projects take the number of solar PV contracts awarded by the PIF under the kingdom’s NREP to five.

It awarded contracts for the development of the 1,500MW Sudair solar PV in 2021 and the 2,060MW Shuaibah 2 solar PV in 2022.

Badeel is a wholly owned subsidiary of the PIF, which is mandated to develop 70% of the NREP’s target capacity through the kingdom's Price Discovery Scheme.

The PIF also owns a 44% stake in Acwa Power.

Neither SPPC nor Acwa Power has disclosed the levelised electricity cost for the latest three schemes.

https://image.digitalinsightresearch.in/uploads/NewsArticle/11540147/main.jpg
Jennifer Aguinaldo
Related Articles
  • Dubai South completes autonomous vehicle trials

    17 July 2024

    Dubai South, an urban master development focused on aviation, logistics and real estate, has completed the first stage of an autonomous vehicle trial in partnership with Russian transport solutions company Evocargo.

    The trials were carried out on a set route in a closed area of the Dubai South Logistics District, Dubai South said on 17 July.

    During the trials, Evocargo checked and validated the hardware, software and reliability of its unmanned electric truck – the Evocargo N1 – for future service in the Logistics District.

    According to Dubai South, autonomous navigation on a predefined route was tested, with an emphasis on safety in mixed traffic scenarios involving interaction with other participants including automobiles, trucks and pedestrians.

    The tests measured Evocargo N1’s performance in object detection, accident prevention, collision avoidance with moving obstacles and emergency stops.

    The truck’s autopilot system was tested in manoeuvres including parking, reverse parking, turning and reverse turning.

    The test also validated the control centre's functionality in route management, remote monitoring and control.

    Dubai South said that no failures or potentially hazardous incidents were reported by any parties during the series of tests.

    Evocargo prepared a report on the trial results across two stages, including the Evocargo N1 platform carrying out freight transportation tasks on a standard route in a closed area.

    Dubai South said: “The platform’s ability to respond to its surrounding environment in mixed traffic was extensively tested and met high validation standards.”

    Dubai South and Evocargo agreed to carry out the UAE’s first autonomous electric vehicle trials in a memorandum of understanding signed in December 2022.

    The initiative contributes to Dubai’s long-term goal that 25% of total transportation in the emirate will be autonomous by 2030.

    Related read: UAE among world’s most prepared for autonomous vehicles

    https://image.digitalinsightresearch.in/uploads/NewsArticle/12155198/main2150.jpg
    Jennifer Aguinaldo
  • PIF signs renewables joint ventures

    17 July 2024

    Register for MEED's 14-day trial access 

    Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth vehicle, the Public Investment Fund (PIF), has announced the signing of three new agreements to localise the manufacturing and assembly of equipment and components needed for solar and wind power projects.

    Renewable Energy Localisation Company (RELC) – a fully owned PIF company – entered into the three agreements, in line with the Saudi Energy Ministry’s drive to localise the production of renewable energy components, the PIF said in a statement on 16 July.

    RELC focuses on "creating partnerships between leading global manufacturers and the Saudi private sector to meet growing local and export demand for renewable energy, and secure and strengthen local supply chains".

    The first joint venture (JV) comprises China-headquartered wind power technology company Envision Energy and Saudi firm Vision Industries. The new company plans to manufacture and assemble wind turbine components including blades with an estimated annual generation capacity of 4GW. Under this agreement, RELC will hold 40% of the JV, with Envision holding 50% and Vision Industries holding 10%.

    The second JV features China-based solar photovoltaic (PV) supplier Jinko Solar and Vision Industries. The JV entails localising the manufacture of PV cells and modules for high-efficiency solar generation. Under the agreement, which projects annual production of 10GW in generation capacity, RELC will hold 40% of the JV, with Jinko Solar holding 40% and Vision Industries holding 20%.

    The final JV was formed by Lumetech, a subsidiary of China's TCL Zhonghuan Renewable Energy, and Vision Industries. This deal will localise the production of solar PV ingots and wafers with annual production sufficient to generate 20GW of power. Under this agreement, RELC will hold 40% of the JV, with Lumetech holding 40% and Vision Industries having 20%.

    The PIF said: "These agreements will enable the localisation of advanced power generation and manufacturing technologies for renewable energy production in Saudi Arabia, as well as maximising local content to help meet growing domestic, regional and international demand."

    It expects the agreements to "enhance the ability of local manufacturing to benefit from the global energy transition and will support the PIF’s efforts to consolidate Saudi Arabia’s position as a global centre for exporting products and services for the renewables sector". 

    Yazeed Al-Humied, deputy governor and head of Middle East and North Africa investments at the PIF, said the new agreements will contribute to localising the production of 75% of the components in Saudi Arabia’s renewable projects by 2030, in line with the Energy Ministry’s National Renewable Energy Programme.

    He added that these projects will also enable Saudi Arabia to become a global hub for the export of renewable technologies.

    Overall, the PIF, through Riyadh-headquartered utility developer Acwa Power and Badeel, is developing a total of eight renewable energy projects with a total capacity of 13.6GW, involving more than $9bn in investments from the PIF and its partners. These joint projects include Sudair, Shuaibah 2, Ar Rass 2, Al-Kahfah, Saad 2, Haden, Muwayh and Al-Khushaybi.

    Related read: Developers regroup for Saudi renewables plans

    https://image.digitalinsightresearch.in/uploads/NewsArticle/12153329/main.jpg
    Jennifer Aguinaldo
  • Dubai sets October deadline for Metro Blue Line bids

    17 July 2024

     

    Register for MEED's 14-day trial access 

    Dubai’s Roads & Transport Authority (RTA) has extended the deadline for consortiums to submit their bids for the contract to design and build Dubai Metro’s new Blue Line to 7 October.

    The previous deadline was 19 July.

    The RTA informed companies on 12 January that they had been prequalified to bid for the contract. The tender documents were issued on 15 January.

    In June, MEED reported that several of the consortiums planning to bid for the contract to deliver Dubai Metro's Blue Line had changed as some civil contractors and rolling stock providers had decided not to participate in the tender.

    According to sources close to the project, the consortiums planning to bid for the project include:

    • Hitachi / Larsen & Toubro / Powerchina / Wade Adams (South Korea / India / China / UAE)
    • China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation / Limak Holding / Mapa Group (China / Turkiye / Turkiye)
    • Alstom / FCC / China State Construction Engineering Corporation (France / Spain / China)
    • CAF / China Tiesiju Civil Engineering Group / Arab Contractors / Binladin Contracting Group (Spain / China / Egypt / UAE)

    In November, MEED exclusively reported that contractors were forming consortiums to bid for the contract to design and build the metro line.

    The RTA issued a notice seeking expressions of interest from contractors for the design and build of the line in October 2023.

    The project is expected to cost several billion dollars to develop. It is one of Dubai’s largest upcoming infrastructure schemes, requiring international contractors to work in joint ventures with local partners. 

    The design-and-build contractor will be responsible for all civil works, electromechanical works, rolling stock and rail systems. After completing the project, the contractor will assist in maintenance and operations for an initial three-year period.

    The Blue Line will connect the existing Red and Green lines. It will have a total length of 30 kilometres (km), 15.5km underground and 14.5km above ground.

    The line will have 14 stations, seven of which will be elevated. There will be five underground stations, including one interchange station, and two elevated transfer stations connected to the existing Centrepoint and Creek stations.

    The scope of the contract also includes the supply of 28 driverless trains, the construction of a depot to accommodate up to 60 trains, and the construction of all associated roads, facilities and utility diversion works.

    The detailed scope of work for the project includes:

    • Civil works, including detailed design and construction of architectural and structural components (including viaducts, tunnels and stations)
    • Design and execution of electromechanical works
    • Design, procurement and delivery of operation and control systems for rail, stations and facilities
    • Design, manufacturing and supply of rolling stock.
    https://image.digitalinsightresearch.in/uploads/NewsArticle/12153251/main.jpg
    Yasir Iqbal
  • Firms express interest in QatarEnergy NGL train project

    17 July 2024

    Register for MEED's 14-day trial access 

    Contractors have expressed interest in a QatarEnergy project to add a fifth natural gas liquids (NGL) train at its NGL complex in Qatar’s Mesaieed Industrial City.

    The objective of the project is to build a fifth NGL train (NGL-5) with the capacity to process up to 350 million cubic feet a day of rich associated gas from QatarEnergy’s offshore and onshore oil fields.

    QatarEnergy issued the expression of interest (EoI) document for the NGL-5 project in June, with contractors submitting responses by 24 June, sources told MEED.

    According to sources, the following contractors are understood to have expressed interest in participating in the project’s main contract tendering process:

    • CTCI Corporation (Taiwan)
    • Larsen and Toubro Energy Hydrocarbon (India)
    • McDermott (US)
    • Saipem (Italy)
    • Samsung E&A (South Korea)
    • Tecnicas Reunidas (Spain)
    • Tecnimont (Italy)

    ⁠Following the end of the prequalification round, QatarEnergy is expected to issue the main engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract for the NGL-5 project in the third quarter of this year.

    In the EoI document, QatarEnergy said that it began site preparation for the project in the fourth quarter of last year and expects work to complete in the first quarter of 2025.

    QatarEnergy intends to start operations at the NGL-5 facility by the second quarter of 2028.

    Project scope of work

    Associated gas from the PS1, PS2 and PS3 offshore fields and the Dukhan onshore field gets processed at existing facilities in the NGL complex at Mesaieed – the FSP, NGL-1 and Qapco ERU units.

    The planned NGL-5 facility will replace the three units at the Mesaieed complex and process gas from the PS1, PS2 and Dukhan fields.

    The scope of work on the project involves EPC of units for the following functions:

    • Feed gas compression
    • Slug handling
    • Gas sweetening
    • Dehydration
    • Mercury removal
    • NGL fractionation
    • NGL recovery
    • Product treatment
    • Propane refrigeration
    • Acid gas enrichment
    • Sulphur recovery
    • Anti-flaring
    • Utilities
    • Boil-off gas recovery
    • Drains and collection networks
    • Effluent water treatment plant
    • Carbon dioxide treatment and sequestration/export
    • Brownfield modifications
    • Product rundown pipelines.

    QatarEnergy plans to divide the scope of work on the NGL-5 project into five EPC packages.

    https://image.digitalinsightresearch.in/uploads/NewsArticle/12139770/main0916.jpg
    Indrajit Sen
  • SWPC moves Jubail-Buraydah bid deadline

    16 July 2024

     

    Saudi Water Partnership Company (SWPC) has extended by three weeks the tender closing date for a contract to develop and operate Saudi Arabia’s second independent water transmission pipeline (IWTP) project, which links Jubail and Buraydah.

    The planned Jubail-Buraydah IWTP is a 603-kilometre (km) pipeline that can transmit 650,000 cubic metres a day of water.

    SWPC has moved the deadline by which companies can submit their proposals for the contract from mid-July to 8 August, according to a source close to the project.

    At least three teams are expected to submit proposals for the contract, MEED previously reported. They are: 

    • Alkhorayef Water & Power Technologies (local) / Acciona (Spain) / Cobra Instalaciones (Spain) 
    • Nesma Company (local) / Aljomaif Energy & Water (Jenwa, local) / Buhur Investment (local)
    • Vision Invest (local) / Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (Taqa, UAE)

    The Jubail-Buraydah IWTP project is larger than the kingdom's first IWTP linking Rayis and Rabigh, which a consortium including the local Alkhorayef Water & Power Technologies Company and Spain's Cobra Instalaciones y Servicios will develop and operate at a cost of SR7.78bn ($2bn).

    SWPC issued the request for proposals for the Jubail-Buraydah IWTP scheme to the prequalified bidders in October last year.

    The state water offtaker qualified 22 companies to bid for the contract in April 2022. 

    The transaction advisory team for the client comprises the US/India’s Synergy Consulting as financial adviser and the local Amer Al-Amr and Germany’s Fichtner Consulting as legal and technical advisers, respectively.

    SWPC’s obligations under the water transfer agreement will be guaranteed by a credit support agreement entered into by the finance ministry on behalf of the Saudi government.

    The project is part of the kingdom’s National Water Strategy 2030, which aims to reduce the water demand-supply gap and ensure desalinated water accounts for 90% of national urban supply, to reduce reliance on non-renewable ground sources.

    SWPC’s Seven-Year Planning Statement calls for developing eight IWTP projects by 2028.

    https://image.digitalinsightresearch.in/uploads/NewsArticle/12135739/main4921.jpg
    Jennifer Aguinaldo