Eskom Successfully Transfers Kusile Unit 5 to Operations

After six months of testing, Eskom’s Kusile Unit 5 now adds 800MW to the national grid, enhancing stability.

After six months of rigorous testing and optimisation, Eskom is pleased to announce the successful transfer of Unit 5 of the Kusile Power Station from the new build programme to operations in the Generation Division. First synchronised to the national grid on December 31, 2023, this unit will now begin contributing power, increasing Kusile Power Station’s total output to 4 000MW.

Kusile Unit 5 makes an extremely valuable contribution to the national grid. Not only is it one of the largest baseload units contributing megawatts, but it also enhances the stability of the network through its nature.

Isabel Fick, General Manager System Operator

This handover marks a significant milestone in Eskom’s ongoing efforts to stabilise South Africa’s power system, adding a stable and much needed 800MW to the grid.

The delivery of the unit, as part of our Generation Operational Recovery Plan, showcases the remarkable achievements possible when our 40 000 employees work together as a collective.

I extend my gratitude to all Eskom employees and contractors for their diligent work in bringing this unit to commercial operation. This achievement aligns with our commitment to maximising grid capacity.

Bheki Nxumalo, Executive for Generation, Eskom Group

We stated in our winter outlook, published on April 26, 2024, that we would add new generation capacity to the grid with Kusile Power Station Unit 5, as part of our intense focus on delivering the Generation Operational Recovery Plan, which was approved by the Board and initiated in March 2023. This addition is part of a total of 2 500MW that will be added before the end of this calendar year.

Eskom will continue to focus on implementing operational recovery, strengthening governance and future proofing the organisation to enable energy security, growth and long-term sustainability to the benefit of South Africa and sub-Saharan Africa.

Dan Marokane, Chief Executive, Eskom Group

Over the past six months, Kusile Power Station Unit 5 has undergone a series of tests while intermittently supplying electricity. Since its synchronisation in December 2023, the unit has met performance expectations, supported the grid and helped to reduce loadshedding. Upon completion, Kusile Power Station will consist of six units, producing a maximum of 4 800MW.

Additionally, Kusile is equipped with wet flue gas desulphurisation (WFGD) technology, making it the first power station in South Africa and Africa to use this emissions abatement technology. WFGD removes sulphur dioxide from flue gas before it is released into the atmosphere, ensuring compliance with international air quality standards.

Construction of the remaining Kusile Unit 6 is progressing as planned, with it expected to be synchronised to the grid in November 2024.”

Located near eMalahleni in Mpumalanga, Kusile is South Africa’s largest construction project and will be the world’s fourth-largest coal plant upon completion.

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