GE Gas engines to power anti-malaria equipment plant in Nigeria
Highlighting the growing demand for distributed power solutions to meet Africa's industrial energy demands, General Electric (GE) announced it will supply three of its 4-megawatt Jenbacher J624 gas engines and one of its 2-MW J612 units to power a new factory that will produce billions of syringes and intravenous (IV) drug products that are needed each year to fight against malaria in Africa.
Clarke Energy – GE's authorized distributor of Jenbacher gas engines in Nigeria – will install the 14-MW cogeneration plant at the syringe and IV products factory on behalf of Nigeria-based Integrated Medical Industries Limited (IMIL). Based in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, IMIL is the first company in the West African sub-region to obtain World Health Organization (WHO) pre-qualification for auto-disable syringes. IMIL is solely owned by the Rivers State Government in Nigeria.
IMIL, which was established by the Pan African Health Foundation (PAHF), with the sponsorship and collaboration of the Rivers State Government, recently began implementing the US$275 million, integrated medical industries project to expand the availability of needed syringes and IV products. PAHF operates an existing equipment production facility at the IMIL site.
IMIL's new syringe and IV products operation is scheduled to start production in 2014. Each year, the new facility is expected to produce 1 billion syringes, 1 billion hypodermic needles, 105 million sets of IV bags and 90 million liters of IV solutions, medications and injectables.
"We selected Clarke Energy and GE's Jenbacher gas engines following a comprehensive assessment of technology options. Using gas as a fuel will provide us significant cost savings compared to diesel. We are confident this will deliver reliable supplies of power to our production plant using the most advanced technology," said Amenya Wokoma, executive project director for IMIL.
Reliable power supplies are essential for smooth operation of the syringe factory since power interruptions can damage batches of syringes. Demand for electricity in Nigeria is high, and the national grid has a challenge meeting this demand. The cogeneration facility, however, will rely on Nigeria's own growing gas distribution network to ensure it has a reliable fuel supply.