Energy solutions for tomorrow’s challenges
We actively seek, design and implement responsible energy solutions to respond to any challenges that may arise at our power plants on the changing energy market. We manage the entire lifecycle of our power plants and will continue to systematically manage our production assets and energy supply based on customer needs. Our goal is having 95% of our electricity production carbon neutral by 2020.
Our most important investment project is the Olkiluoto 3 EPR project through our joint venture TVO. In the case of hydropower, we modernised the electricity and automation systems of our Raasakka power plant in the Iijoki river. In the case of thermal power, we invested in solutions to improve the competitiveness, flexibility and efficiency of energy production at our plants, reducing emissions at the same time.
We modernised the electricity and automation systems of the lowermost hydropower plant in the Iijoki river, Raasakka, in 2018. The modernisation improves the availability of the power plant and provides a boost to regulating capacity.
The reform project, which lasted from the summer until the end of the year, involved replacing systems dating back to the early 1970s with modern technology. The turbines and generators were also serviced.
The modernisation secures the power plant’s production and control functions for the next 15 to 20 years. The modern systems and the more accurate information provided by them facilitate condition monitoring and the availability of spare parts. Furthermore, the new technology improves the plant’s energy efficiency.
The investment is part of a systematic renovation programme of our hydropower plants. Modernisations improve the availability and add several decades to the service lives of the hydropower plants. Their ability to produce just-in-time regulating power that balances production and consumption to support the increased wind and solar power capacities is also improved, which allows the continuing adoption of an emission-free energy system.
Did you know what regulating power is?
Regulating power is required to even out the supply and demand of electricity. Adjustable and flexible electricity production ensures interruption-free supply of electricity and evens out price spikes.
More regulating power is needed when the share of wind or solar power, which fluctuate based on the weather conditions, clearly increases. When there is enough regulating power capacity, the production of wind and solar power can be increased without compromising the reliability of the electricity system.
Hydropower is a particularly good source of regulating power, because its production volume can be very quickly adjusted. Due to its flexibility, hydropower is an excellent partner for wind and solar power. When combined with new solutions, such as storage and flexible consumption, hydropower will ensure the functionality of the electricity system and enable transfer to an emission-free energy system.
In the summer of 2018, scheduled maintenance, or an extensive annual outage, of a turbine took place at our biopower plant located at the UPM Kymi mill in Kuusankoski, Kouvola. The outage guarantees good availability of the plant for years to come.
The high- and low-pressure turbines were maintained, parts were replaced and the entire machinery was maintained during the maintenance outage, which lasted from the beginning of June to the end of August. The power line and transformer substations were also maintained. The last extensive annual outage of the turbine took place in 2009.
Inspections and maintenance at the correct time are an essential part of the systematic lifecycle management of a power plant.
Read more about the extensive annual outage of Kymin Voima on our website.
The settings of the boiler in the Kaukaan Voima biopower plant at the UPM Kaukas mill are being developed. The project, which started in the autumn of 2018 and will end in the spring of 2019, will boost the management of the combustion process by means of advanced boiler settings. This will reduce nitrogen oxide emissions and the need to use ammonia solution to manage the emissions. The boiler’s improved efficiency and the fact that the boiler will consume less house load will make the process more energy efficient and induce savings.
We develop lifecycle management of our power plants
We are in the process of developing the management of our power plant assets, i.e. the lifecycle management of our power plants and the production processes. This means monitoring the equipment and carrying out a variety of inspections, maintenance actions and repairs to ensure that the plants can be used safely, efficiently, reliably and cost-effectively, as well as to minimise risks.
The pilot projects also cover the new opportunities provided by digitalisation. Digitalisation and smart solutions offer plenty of new opportunities to increase flexibility, to improve efficiency, energy efficiency and availability, as well as to prolong service lives. They will also reform our competencies.
With the advanced technology, we will more easily acquire more accurate information on the operation of the power plant equipment and the actions we have taken. For the information obtained from measuring instruments to be utilised, it must be visualised and analysed.
The key issue in data analysis is expertise. It can be combined with artificial intelligence and machine learning with the help of networks. The collected and analysed data can be used as the foundation when making decisions and developing the operations.
Agile pilot projects using digitalisation at our thermal power plants
Digitalisation has introduced a whole new culture of experimentation to heat production. Instead of equipment investments, we invest in smart solutions and low threshold experimental pilot projects at our combined heat and power plants. The pilot projects can aim at lower emissions, more flexible production, improved energy efficiency or more easily anticipated maintenance actions and repairs and thus increased availability, among other issues.
The pilot projects assist us in understanding the versatile opportunities offered by analytics. They allow us to find new tools and working methods, as well as to learn how to more effectively utilise networks.
Cooperation in developing turbine controllers
Ground-breaking work is being done in a project with the University of Oulu in the development of turbine regulators at the Kierikki hydropower plant. The project aims to determine factors that slow down the control of the hydropower plant and how the control system can be developed.
Launched in 2017, the project has designed a new controller and simulated its operation. The project will continue with the testing of the controller.
There is more need for fast and accurate control as the volumes of production that fluctuates based on the weather conditions, increase.
To read more, visit our web site
Some of the largest modernisation projects in the history of TVO were carried out at the Olkiluoto nuclear power plant, and the safety culture on which the operations are based was further developed. A comprehensive maintenance outage took place in Olkiluoto 1 (OL1). The most important actions during the outage included replacement of reactor coolant pumps and the related frequency converters, a reform of the reactor make-up water supply system and a modernisation of a heating system which affects residual heat removal. As a result of the modernisations, the rated output of OL1 was increased from 880 MW to 890 MW at the turn of the year.
In September 2018, the Government granted an operating licence for OL1 and OL2 for the next twenty years.
Preparation for production operation at Olkiluoto 3 EPR unit continued
In 2018, preparations at the Olkiluoto 3 EPR plant unit for production operation continued. More training for the operating personnel has been arranged, and the first statutory decisions on operator licences were received in December. Hot tests were completed in May 2018. In the hot tests, the nuclear island and the turbine island were operated as a single system for the first time.
According to a schedule updated by the plant supplier in November 2018, regular electricity production of the OL3 EPR unit will begin in January 2020.
For more information, please visit TVO’s website.
Posiva is building a disposal facility for spent nuclear fuel
Excavation work of the disposal facility for spent nuclear fuel that is being built by Posiva in Olkiluoto has proceeded according to plan. A full-scale in-situ system test (FISST) realised in the demonstration facilities of Posiva’s disposal facility started in the summer of 2018. The goal with the FISST is to prove that Posiva’s safe disposal concept can be realised as planned.
Posiva Oy is in charge of executing in Olkiluoto the final disposal of the spent nuclear fuel generated at its owners’ power plants, TVO’s Olkiluoto nuclear power plant and Fortum's Loviisa nuclear power plant.
For more information, please visit Posiva's website.