Koeberg generators are real but one more Eskom scam – Chris Yelland

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Koeberg generators are real but one more Eskom scam – Chris Yelland

Koeberg generators are real but one more Eskom scam – Chris Yelland

Eskom has been in the highlight, but as soon as more, because the Zondo Fee persevered its direct take inquiry into its board and the dismissal of three senior people. Several whistle blowers have stepped ahead to shine a gentle on cases of corruption. Undoubtedly, dilapidated Eskom head of lovely and compliance Suzanne Daniels mentioned tender manipulation to award contracts to folks friendly to ANC people used to be the norm, and orders from the ministry of public enterprises on how Eskom enterprise must be conducted took situation on a each day foundation. Energy educated Chris Yelland delves into the shaded waters surrounding the Koeberg nuclear energy location, and the contract awarded to French contractor, Areva, beneath fishy phrases. – Claire Badenhorst

Steam generators for Koeberg: the most costly transport of scrap steel in the ancient previous of humankind

By Chris Yelland*

The transport of the first of six unusual steam generators by Areva final week to elongate the life of Eskom’s Koeberg nuclear energy location unearths but but one more scam at Eskom, perpetrated at some level of the unpleasant leadership of Brian Molefe, Matshela Koko and the dodgy Eskom board at the time.

Chris Yelland

On the foundation of a 3-month shorter transport time, the R5bn steam generator replacement contract used to be in the end awarded to French direct-owned nuclear contractor, Areva, who after running into financial difficulties, in the mean time are managed by French national electricity utility, Electricite dé France (EDF).

This adopted a protracted Excessive Court, Attraction Court and Constitutional Court fight in South Africa, by which Westinghouse (in the damage unsuccessfully) tried to advise the irregular contract award to Areva on the foundation that the claimed urgency of the life-extension used to be deliberately contrived by Eskom in characterize to wrongfully award the contract to Areva.

On the time when Koeberg used to be constructed between 1976 and 1985, Framatome (the predecessor to Areva) manufactured the two 900 MW nuclear reactors and the six linked steam generators at Koeberg, utilizing designs licenced from Westinghouse.

Both Eskom and Areva claimed that it used to be completely indispensable for stable operation of the energy plant and for security of electricity offer in South Africa that the steam generators must be in the end replaced at some level of the so-known as “X23” outage at Koeberg in 2018.

Be taught additionally:  Chris Yelland: More finger-pointing at Eskom – COO cleared of costs

This used to be cited by Eskom because the aim for awarding the contract to Areva, the build an allegedly contrived three-month “waft” in Areva’s project way used to be indicated because the deciding component. This despite Westinghouse having met all of the technical and commercial requirements, with a lower contract imprint, and a guarantee to fulfill the 2018 completion date on distress of enormous penalties.

Nonetheless, all has no longer gone properly for Areva in executing the project.

Areva is supposed to have skilled excessive manufacturing quality issues with the steam generator forgings in France. In conception of the claimed time criticality of the project, to salvage to the underside of these points Eskom and Areva agreed that the uncompleted forgings might perchance perchance perchance well be air-freighted to China the build an Areva “companion” would full the salvage.

It appears, each and each of the six steam generator forgings required the hiring of a Russian Antonov freighter airplane (six flights in full) to cruise the forgings from France to China. Nonetheless, in accordance with an impeccable offer, after taking a closer scrutinize at the forgings, Areva’s Chinese companion made up our minds to scrap them and start again from scratch.

One can superb speculate as to why it used to be no longer regarded as more cost-effective for Areva to cruise engineers from the Chinese manufacturer to France to see the steam generator forgings, as adversarial to flying all six steam generators to China for the inspection, earlier than them being scrapped in China.

A dilapidated senior nuclear govt at Eskom commented to this author at the time that: “This used to be the most costly transport of scrap steel in the ancient previous of humankind”.

Eskom has since confirmed to EE Trade Intelligence final week that: “The forgings did no longer meet the expected quality standards and might perchance perchance perchance well no longer be accredited, and therefore they had been scrapped by the contractor at their very have payment”.

In line with Eskom, the contractual transport date of all six steam generators used to be February 2018, with the contractual completion date for the replacement of all six steam generators being the cease of 2019.

Nonetheless, with all of the delays in the project, collectively with restarting salvage of the steam generators from scratch in China, transport of the first three steam generators for Unit 1 at Koeberg is superb starting now in September 2020, with these for Unit 2 superb scheduled for transport in the third quarter of 2021.

Be taught additionally:  Chris Yelland: Musical chairs at direct nuclear company – must axed Necsa CEO be re-hired?

Concerning the actual replacement of the steam generators, Eskom now says that: “Set up is aligned with the outages scheduled for 2021 and 2022 respectively for the two Koeberg reactor gadgets (Unit 1 and Unit 2)”. No exclaim is now made by Eskom of the criticality for completion in 2018 cited by Eskom at the time because the aim for placing a dearer contract with Areva.

Whereas no longer answering specific questions about the payment overruns bobbing up for the project, Eskom insists that: “The estimated payment-to-completion for the project is interior the distinctive budget accredited in 2014”. For certain, here’s no longer very commended, since the distinctive budget accredited in 2014 isn’t very any longer disclosed, and will had been tremendously bigger that the contract imprint.

Nonetheless, it appears determined that Eskom has truly paid a top price for the replacement by Areva of the steam generators at Koeberg on the foundation of a claimed three-month shorter completion time, when truly completion will doubtless be some three years longer.

It’s an archaic trick, nonetheless it for trail clearly aloof works.

  • Chris Yelland, managing director, EE Trade Intelligence. 

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