My name is Anton ter Vehn, and this week you will be able to follow me and three Chalmers students: Henrik Nordbäck, Mikeal Pähn & Erik Weihs as we participate in the annual young engineers field trip of E.U.R.E.L. to Israel, where we will explore the technology of the country in regards to electrical engineering.
The field trip is a cooperation between the many organisations of EUREL, which means that it is an ideal place for getting contacts and friends all across Europe. As an electrical engineering student, it is an invaluable experience, both personally and professonally, and hopefully this blogg will show you why!
The day began when we left the city of Eilat, known as the tourist paradise of Israel, to go north towards Tel Aviv and visit a cement producer known as Nesher Israel Cement enterprises. It is one of the largest cement production facilties in the world, and it has its own production of electricity from natural gas. As it turns out, the nation of Israel mostly use this resource to generate electricity for their cities and factories, as major deposits have been discovered in the mediterranean region during recent years. Therefore, ther has been great investments in the area to make the nation energy independent.
The powerplant itself works by a hybrid turbine system, using both gas and steam to generate electricity at high efficiency, with equipment from G.E, Siemens and of course ABB. This allows the cement plant not only be independent in their energy generation, but also to generate power to the electrical grid. This is quite important, since Israel is from the perspective of energy generation, an Island. Its power grid is not connected to the electrical grids of other nations, due to their position in the region and the world, which is quite different from how it is in Europe. A quite interesting problem, which will be discussed on Wednesday at the Electricity 2017 conference in Eilat.
But with a total capability of 120MW, the power plant is not only a major resource for the cement production plant, one of the most improtant resources in Israel, but also a major factor to the stability and infrastructure of the region.
Later, we unfortunately had a change of plans and could not perform a visit which was planned to a solar power plant located in the region. Instead, we visited another gas power plant, which used turbines in a similar manner to generate electricity to the country. It really gave the perspective that the country is really dependent on is natural gas resources, but also raised the question: How can one increase the efficiency even more in these plants, and how can one build a sustainable grid from Israel to other nations in the future? Questions that, of course, will be discussed in the coming days.
I hope that you’ve enjoyed this first peek at the field trip to Israel, and that you will keep following us during the coming days!
Anton ter Vehn
Student ambassador SER