Flores 864-km supergrid system is fully operational: PT PLN

Flores 864-km supergrid system is fully operational: PT PLN

An electric generator facility within the Flores Supergrid system operated by the state electricity company PT PLN in East Nusa Tenggara Province. (ANTARA/HO-PLN).

Jakarta (ANTARA) - State electricity company PT PLN announced that the Flores Island Supergrid in East Nusa Tenggara, spanning over 864 kilometres (kms), from Labuan Bajo on the island's west side to Maumere on the island's eastern side, was fully operational.

PT PLN Regional Business Director for Sulawesi, Maluku, Papua, and Nusa Tenggara regions Syamsul Huda stated that the total capacity of the electric grid facilities, reaching 225 megavolt ampere (MVA), is expected to attract investment and expedite economic development in Flores Island and the neighbouring regions.

"We believe that increasing electricity capacity is essential to improving the quality of life of residents and accelerating local activities," Huda noted in a release quoted in Jakarta, Saturday.

The current electrical grid in Flores Island has a total capacity of 104.1 megawatts (MW), with a maximum peak load of 71.6 MW to serve customers.

The super-grid system connects two separate electrical grid systems of the West Flores and East Flores grid plants.

Huda explained the West Flores grid system had a total capacity of 40.7 MW. The grid system in West Flores comprised the Rangko gas machine-fired power plant, with a capacity of 23 MW and the Golobilas diesel-fired power plant, with capacity of 3.4 MW, both in Labuan Bajo; Ulumbu geothermal power plant, with a capacity of 10 MW and Faobata Bajawa diesel-fired power plant, with capacity of 2.2 MW in Manggarai District, and other power stations.

He noted that the East Flores grid system had a total capacity of 63.4 MW, with supporting power stations being the Wewaria solar power plant and Waeblerer solar power plant, both with 1-MW capacity; Ndungga micro-hydro power plant, with a 2-MW capacity; Mautapaga diesel-fired power plant and Wolomarang diesel-fired power plant, both with 3-MW capacity; Ropa steam-fired power station, with 14-MW capacity; and Maumere gas engine-fired power plant, with a capacity of 40 MW, in Sikka District.

The merging of the two electric grid systems will increase Flores' electric resource reliability while concurrently making the system more efficient and lowering operational costs by three to four percent.

Currently, the electrification ratio in East Nusa Tenggara Province has reached 88.82 percent, with electrified villages having reached 96.57 percent as of June 2021.

Huda noted that PT PLN spent a total of Rp1.1 trillion (around US$75 million) to construct the Flores Supergrid and also drew attention to the most challenging aspect of the construction project being its remote location.

"Our main obstacle apart from land acquisition to construct electric towers was also the geographical challenge during construction. We need to deliver materials before constructing the foundation, completing the tower, and connecting the electric lines, all within remote locations, thereby forcing us to adapt to basic tools and rely on manpower," Huda expounded.

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