23 Apr 2024

Alba Achieves First Fire of State-of-the-Art Gas Turbine for Power Station 5 Block 4 Project

Aluminium Bahrain B.S.C. (Alba), one of the world's largest aluminium smelters, announced a significant milestone towards the commercial operation of its Power Station 5 (PS 5) Block 4 Project with the First Fire of the Mitsubishi Power M701JAC Gas Turbine (GT) on Tuesday 23 April 2024. This achievement marks a key step towards the project's on-schedule completion in Q4 2024. Notably, it also comes just six months after the GT unit's delivery to site in October 2023.

A celebratory ceremony was held at the Block 4 Project site, attended by high-level officials from Alba including the Chairman of the Board Khalid Al Rumaihi, Chief Executive Officer Ali Al Baqali, Chief Power Officer Amin Sultan, and Alba's Executive Management Team. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI)’s Senior Vice President, Vice President, Energy Systems Takashi Tozawa, and SEPCOIII’s Vice President, Kong Lingfeng, and senior officials from ESBI were also present.

In his remarks, Alba's Chairman Khalid Al Rumaihi highlighted the significance of the First Fire milestone and stated, “This achievement marks the commencement of commissioning activities for Block 4 which upon completion will set a new standard for sustainable and efficient power generation within the aluminium industry.”

Al Rumaihi further emphasized Alba's commitment to environmental responsibility, stating, “The Block 4 Project translates our proactive approach to integrating energy operational efficiency with environmental standards to align with Bahrain's Net Zero Emissions target by 2060.”

Adding to the celebration, Alba's CEO Ali Al Baqali expressed his pride in achieving this milestone safely with more than 3.8 million safe working hours. He then emphasized the Project's direct alignment with Alba’s ESG Roadmap: “With the successful First Fire of the advanced Gas Turbine, Alba is now closer to achieving its goals of reducing its environmental footprint and ensuring a sustainable future for the aluminium industry.

He also commended the collaborative efforts of the owner teams from Alba, MHI, SEPCOIII, and ESBI, reiterating confidence in delivering the project on schedule.”

Takashi Tozawa, Senior Vice President, Vice President, Energy Systems at MHI added: “Mitsubishi Power is honoured to support Alba and the Kingdom of Bahrain as we celebrate the successful achievement of first firing for gas turbine ahead of the schedule and the start of the hot commissioning of Alba’s new CCGT Block 4 in Power Station 5 with our partners SEPCOIII. Today's success is testament to our unwavering commitment to using the latest innovation to deliver industry-leading and reliable solutions to our partners. Our advanced, hydrogen-ready M701 JAC gas turbine technology provided for this project also underscores Mitsubishi Power's dedication to advancing low carbon power generation worldwide. As Bahrain progresses towards its ambitious growth targets outlined in the Economic Vision 2030, we take great pride in working together with Alba to provide uninterrupted and efficient power to support the country on its journey to sustainable growth.”

Adding further, Kong Lingfeng SEPCOIII’s Vice President said: “As SEPCOIII, we proudly celebrate the successful first firing of the gas turbine and the start of hot commissioning for Alba's new CCGT Block 4 at Power Station 5 in Bahrain. This milestone showcases our dedication to innovative solutions, reflecting our commitment to global low-carbon power generation. Collaborating with Alba, we deliver reliable, sustainable power, supporting Bahrain's Economic Vision 2030.”

Alba's PS5 Block 4 Expansion Project is the addition of a fourth Block of similar combined cycle configuration with 680.9 megawatts (MW) M701JAC Gas Turbine Combined Cycle and includes tie into the existing 220kV Substation. Once operational in Q4 2024, Block 4 will increase the nameplate capacity of PS5 Complex from 1,800 MW to 2,481 MW and reduce its overall GHG emissions intensity ratio by 0.5 tonnes of CO2 per 1 tonne of aluminium produced.

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