MaK satisfies Cementos Progreso19 November 1999
Cementos Progreso, Central America’s largest cement works, has implemented a strategy that required construction of its own power capacity to satisfy production goals. It is using three heavy fuel MaK M453 engines to produce a total of 16 MWe. This has reduced Cementos Progreso’s energy costs by 35 per cent.
The plant supplies electricity to operate the kilns, heat to fire the kilns, and steam to drive an adjacent limestone operation.
An extensive study was carried out to analyse the various options. The cost of potential outages on production was of great concern to plant officials. Due to the complex start-up and shut-down process of the cement works. Power and heat reliability were identified as key issues.
On reviewing the data, officials decided to build a powerhouse based around three 12-cylinder Vee-configured MaK M453 engines, each rated to provide 4.4 MWe of continuous power. Since heavy fuel was used to heat the burners, only the existing fuel supply system needed to be modified for the new gensets.
The MaK engines appealed due to their proven performance with heavy fuel and the 4:1 ratio of load to heat output, required for the process heating of the cement production. With the installation of comparatively large exhaust gas boilers, the entire heat requirement of the cement works can be supplied by waste energy. The payback period for the gensets will be less than two years.