April 21, 2009
The Board of Eskom Holding Limited has recently approved funding for the world’s first UCG-IGCC plant, to be developed in Majuba, South Africa. The project will be developed using Ergo Exergy’s proprietary εUCG™ technology and expertise, further reinforcing the company’s position as world leader in commercial UCG technology.
The first Underground Coal Gasification (UCG) plant on the African continent reached a new milestone today, with the signing of further commercial agreements between the project developer, Eskom Holding Ltd. and technology provider, Ergo Exergy Technologies Inc. of Canada. The agreement cements a long-term working relationship between Eskom and Ergo Exergy that has been developing for over seven years, since early contacts in June 2002.
Ergo Exergy’s εUCG™ technology and expertise is responsible for the successful design, development, commissioning and operation of a pilot UCG plant at Majuba (in Mpumalanga, South Africa) that began gas production in January 2007. Since this time, the operation has been producing gas continuously and has gasified over 14,000 tonnes of coal.
The newly signed general license agreement allows Eskom to access Ergo Exergy’s proprietary εUCG™ technology for commercial application in the Republic of South Africa. The initial focus of the agreement will be the development and construction of the world’s first Underground Coal Gasification – Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (UCG-IGCC) demonstration project at Majuba.
The funding for the initial 120MWe demonstration unit was recently confirmed by Eskom and work on its implementation has already commenced. Successful demonstration will enable consideration of further large commercial power projects, the first of which would be a 2,100MWe installation at the Majuba site.