WSP to assist in delivery of BESS across several Eskom distribution sites

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IN October 2021, WSP was appointed as the Engineer for Eskom Battery Energy Storage Solutions (BESS) project located at several Eskom distribution sites in the Western Cape, Eastern Cape, Northern Cape and KwaZulu Natal. The WSP responsibilities include engineering, assistance in procurement, construction supervision, project management, and commissioning services for the project. 

The project is divided into three packages across the seven Eskom distribution sites. The first package at the Skaapvlei substation in the Western Cape entails the design, supply, and installation, and commissioning of BESS for a minimum of 80MW/320 MWh usable capacity. The second package focuses on the Melkhout Eastern Cape), and Pongola and Elandskop (KwaZulu Natal) substations for a minimum of 35MW/140MWh at Melkhout, 40MW/160MWh at Pongola, and 8MW/32MWh at Elandskop. The third package is for the Paleisheuwel, Graafwater, and Hex substations in the Western Cape. It is for a minimum of 10MW/40MWh at Paleisheuwel, 4.5MW/25MWh at Graafwater, and 20MW/100MWh at Hex. All the packages include five years of operations and maintenance. 

The professional team from WSP is responsible for providing assurance on engineering design, construction supervision, and project management for the BESS project. It will also supply the professional engineering services to review the deliverables provided by Eskom and other third parties to integrate and co-ordinate the overall engineering. WSP will continually analyse the technical specifications, perform the technical evaluation of tenders – and provide professional assistance for the procurement of the packages identified for the project. 

During the construction phase of the project, WSP will act as the Engineer on behalf of Eskom and will monitor plant and equipment manufacturing as well as monitor and inspect the construction, commissioning, and testing of the contracted works of the contractors and their sub-contractors in providing, installing, and setting to work the project. 

Furthermore, acting on behalf of Eskom as its Engineer, WSP will be authorised to communicate with the EPC contractor for clarification and seeking resolution of technical issues.

 Instrumental guidance

As part of the detail design process, WSP will perform a HAZOP analysis to identify potential hazards and operability problems caused by deviations from the design baselines. 

“The HAZOP analysis is used to evaluate the design for possible flaws or undesirable effects and interactions with vendor designs. Together with the LSA process, this will ensure that potential failures are identified and eliminated during the detail design process,” says Dinesh Buldoo, Director: Power, WSP in Africa. 

Furthermore, WSP will oversee the construction phase of the project which will include all tasks from the design and engineering activities to the handover from the EPC contractors to Eskom. The purpose of this stage is to check that the EPC contractors will provide a quality service as per the EPC contract within the stipulated budget and time frames. 

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