Gov't Approves Construction of 4 Combined-Cycle Plants

Gov't Approves Construction of 4 Combined-Cycle PlantsGov't Approves Construction of 4 Combined-Cycle Plants

The government's Economic Council approved the construction of four combined-cycle power plants via direct foreign investment in a session late on Monday.

The plants are set to be built in the cities of Tabriz and Mianeh in East Azarbaijan Province, Zahedan in Sistan-Baluchestan Province and Aras Free Zone bordering Azerbaijan in northwest Iran, IRNA reported. With a total power production capacity of 3,520 megawatts, the combined-cycle plants are expected to be built in five years and curb fuel consumption by 17.5 million cubic meters a year.

Iran plans to increase power production capacity from combined-cycle plants by 8,000 MW in the foreseeable future and about 10% of the country's total electricity are produced by thermal units. Combined-cycle plants consume an equivalent of roughly one-20th the energy needed by conventional plants. Such plants use both gas and steam turbines to produce up to 50% more electricity from the same fuel than a traditional simple-cycle plant.

The council also approved the pipe-laying plan across the cities of Damghan, Kiasar, Sari and Neka at an estimated cost of $153 million.

Last month, energy officials explored the prospect of building thermal and combined-cycle plants via Japanese finance in a meeting with representatives from Japanese companies Hitachi, Mitsubishi and Marubeni Power Systems in Tehran.

Iran’s electricity industry ranks 14th in the world and first in the Middle East in terms of electricity generation. It is the largest exporter and importer of electricity in the Middle East and exports electricity to Armenia, Pakistan, Turkey, Iraq and Afghanistan.