Baghdad Bismayah (Bismaya) Combined Cycle Power Plant, Iraq

Baghdad Bismayah

Baghdad Bismayah (Bismaya) combined-cycle power plant is being developed by Iraq's Ministry of Electricity, approximately 25km south-east of the Baghdad city. With a capacity of 3,000MW, the new plant is estimated to cost $4.5bn and will power more than five million homes in Iraq.

Development of the power plant is part of the Bismayah New City project, which is aimed at rebuilding conflict-ridden and war-torn Iraq. The Bismayah New City project includes the construction of more than 100,000 homes in addition to all the necessary infrastructure such as roads, water and sewerage facilities, power plants and desalination facilities.

The plant is being developed in two phases of 1,500MW each, due to limited gas allocation. It is scheduled to commence operations with a simple cycle phase in October 2016, while full operations are expected to commence in October 2017.

Bismayah power plant make-up

The power plant consists of four 750MW combined-cycle blocks, with each block containing two 260MW GE Frame 9FA gas turbines, two heat recovery steam generators and one GE Frame C7 steam turbine.

The gas turbines are configured to operate on natural gas and diesel. Natural gas is the main fuel, whereas diesel is used as standby. The diesel required for the plant is stored in six 10,000m³ tanks.

Other facilities include oil unloading, storage and transfer facilities, gas supply units, water and air-cooled condensers, two wet cooling towers, fuel gas conditioning and pressure reduction, main and auxiliary transformers, a main control system, 132kV / 400kV substations, water treatment plant, and administrative and maintenance areas.

Multiple transmission lines will also be built to export the power generated by the plant through 400kV and 132kV switchyards.

Combined-cycle power generation at Bismayah

The GE Frame 9FA gas turbines have a combined rated capacity of 2,080MW and can operate both in the open and combined-cycle mode through the use of a bypass stack. The remaining 920MW capacity is generated by the steam turbines.

Electricity is generated through the burning of natural gas in the gas turbines, which generates heat and air, driving the gas turbine-generator. Exhaust heat from the gas turbines is collected through heat recovery steam generators to generate steam.

The high-pressure steam drives the steam turbine to generate additional electricity without any additional fuel consumption. Waste heat from the steam turbines is sent to a set of fin-fan coolers and wet cooling towers.

The power plant has been designed with the right level of redundancy to ensure that a single failure across the system will not result in the total loss of the entire generating unit.

Construction of the Iraqi power plant

"It is scheduled to commence operations with a simple cycle phase in October 2016, while full operations are expected to commence in October 2017."

Civil conflicts and instability have caused significant damage to the city of Baghdad. As a result, construction of the power plant required the development of self-sufficient temporary construction facilities to carry out the construction activities.

The project was 80% complete at the end of August 2016. The construction has required 300,000m³ of earthworks, 60,000m³ of concrete, 9,000t of structural steel, 3,000t of steel piping, and 35,000t of mechanical equipment.

Contractors involved with the Bismayah power plant

The Ministry of Electricity of Iraq has contracted Mass Group Holding (MGH) to develop the plant. MGH awarded the design, engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract to ENKA Insaat ve Sanayi A.S, a company based in Turkey.

APPA was subcontracted by MGH to serve as the owner's engineer for selecting the EPC, providing services for project realisation and technical services for implementation of the 132/400kV switchyard.

The Frame 9FA gas turbines and Frame C7 steam turbines have been supplied by GE USA, while the heat recovery steam generator has been supplied by CMI Belgium. GEA Germany has been contracted to supply the water and air-cooled condensers.

Siemens Germany is responsible for the main and auxiliary transformers. The main control system is being provided by Emerson and the 132\400Kv substations are being supplied by ABB Sweden.

Amak performed seismic tests and refraction surveys for the project.