Austria’s Most Cutting-Edge Thermal Power Plant Soon to Start Operations


New combined cycle gas turbine plant in Mellach already connected to the power grid

The very first igniting of the gas turbine in the combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) plant in Mellach saw VERBUND launching the commissioning phase of Austria’s most high-performance power plant. The highly efficient thermal power plant replaces five decommissioned thermal plants and, by comparison, will save an annual two million tonnes of CO2. Furthermore, the environmentally friendly cogeneration of power and heat will produce district heating for Graz that is free of particulate matter.

Austria’s most cutting-edge thermal power plant is situated in Mellach, south of Graz. This week heralds the start of the commissioning phase of VERBUND’s new CCGT plant. The power plant has produced electricity for the first time and delivered this to the power grid. At the heart of the new plant are two gas turbines, which have been manufactured at Siemens and are operated using natural gas. Natural gas is the most environmentally friendly fossil fuel; it contains neither sulphur nor particulate matter.

The highly efficient power plant replaces a total of five conventional thermal power plants and, by comparison, will save an annual two million tonnes of CO2 emissions. Furthermore, the environmentally friendly power-heat cogeneration guarantees Greater Graz a heat supply that is free from particulate matter. With an electricity capacity of 832 megawatts, the CCGT plant in Mellach is Austria’s most high-performance power plant and forms the backbone of high power supply security for the population, the economy and industry.

Reliable balancing out of the fluctuating wind and solar power supply
The CCGT plant in Mellach works independently from external influences, such as seasonal fluctuations or weather conditions, and springs into action if ever the wind takes a break and the sun doesn’t shine. The commissioning of the latest VERBUND power plant ensures that Austria’s power supply is significantly more secure, especially in the cold winter half year.
Since the ground-breaking ceremony in autumn 2008, more than 2.3 million working hours have been spent on the construction site of the CCGT plant in Mellach. Up to 1,200 skilled workers were simultaneously employed on Styria’s largest building site during the assembly period. The power plant’s key components, such as the two main transformers, have been made in Austria. VERBUND has invested 550 million Euro in the CCGT plant in Mellach; assumption of regular operations will take place at the end of the year.