Juan Carlos Hernández Nájera
Director General
Industrias Energéticas
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View from the Top

Green Power Generation Through Microturbines

Wed, 01/20/2016 - 16:31

Q: What does Industrias Energéticas offer the Mexican oil and gas industry, and how are you adapting to the new needs of this industry?

A: Industrias Energéticas is an arm of the Capstone Turbine Corporation specialized in the sale of microturbines, particularly those using the air-based turbine engine technology patent. Our company has been a supplier of Capstone microturbines to the Mexican oil and gas sector since 2006. Our participation with PEMEX includes projects in Cantarell, Ku-Maloob-Zaap, and the PEMEX compression station in Samaria-Luna, carrying out activities such as installing custody transfer measuring systems in 30 platforms producing natural gas, installing Coriolis and Ultrasonic Measurement gauges, and implementing engineering, procurement, installation, and testing systems.

At the present time, the market is extremely demanding regarding its products and services. Capstone Turbine Corporation and Industrias Energéticas have prepared for this new climate by engineering products whose capabilities to generate clean energy have been certified at an international level by UL, the Environmental Protection Agency, the World Alliance for Decentralized Energy, and the Energy Solutions Center. Our products have also been certified at a national level by the National Commission for Efficient Energy Use (CONUEE), the Ministry of Energy, SEMARNAT, and the Trust for the Saving of Electric Energy (FIDE). Industrias Energéticas also holds an ISO 9001:2008 certification awarded by DNV GL, which guarantees the commitment and quality of our services to our clients, which include the installation, maintenance, and user training of Capstone technology and equipment. The new business environment will enable us to find and retain new clients, and to find new applications and solutions to power generation issues at a notably low price. We will offer our products and services through an integrated package that includes the installation and activation of microturbines, the training of operators and maintenance managers, and an additional maintenance plan for all commissioned equipment, as well as a protection plan and extended warranties for all units in question.

Q: How are policies and legislation increasing awareness in matters of environmental protection?

A: The most important aspect of our initial approach to potential new clients has become the full environmentallyfriendly nature of our products, given the fact that they do not utilize oils, antifreeze, or grease, and that our machinery generates ultra-low emissions. Our clients also now pay special attention to endorsements and approvals from all the aforementioned national and international agencies. This emphasis certainly sends a message about the increased awareness in the industry, and our goal to promote efficient, environmentally-friendly equipment makes us stand out in this context.

Our business line will benefit from the policies that will result from the commitments Mexico made in Paris at COP21. Companies are still in the process of changing their mentalities and profiles, transitioning from a cheap but polluting form of energy generation, to using equipment like the kind we make, which is clean, low maintenance, and durable. Unfortunately, it will take a few years to materialize, as companies still prefer fast and easy revenues over eco-friendly operations.

Q: Which types of units are currently the most popular, and what benefits do they bring to your clients?

A: All of our microturbines include top-tier technology, and they all provide significant benefits to our clients. Microturbine models C30, C65, C200, C800, and C1000 are all trustworthy pieces of equipment with low-cost maintenance and no oils, refrigerants, or additives needed to generate ultra-low emissions. However, recently in December 2015, at the PowerGen International Global Convention organized in Las Vegas, Capstone presented its new unit. The Power Package C1000S introduces various upgrades in areas such as air filtration, gas escape, and most importantly, heat recovery of up to 1.5MW in hot water, which increases its reliability and lowers emissions even more, allowing users to get more than 14 million service hours. This new product series from Capstone seeks to make the 1MW turbine energy system the smartest in the global market for distributed generation.

Q: What has been the role of Industrias Energéticas in the development of the Los Ramones II project, and how has this contributed to the expansion of your business?

A: Industrias Energéticas was selected by the AOT Pipelines consortium, composed of Arendal, Odebrecht, and Techint, from a pool of 30 other electricity-generating system suppliers to be involved in Los Ramones II, the largest natural gas pipeline project in the country so far. Our role within this project is of utmost importance because of our 25 units installed in different segments of this gas pipeline, which are divided into eleven C800 models and fourteen C30 models, have been in charge of generating electricity necessary for the continuous operation of the compression stations and the main line valves. The latter elevate the pressure on the fluid inside the line and supply the necessary power to send the gas throughout the whole course of the total constructed pipeline, which includes both phase I and II of Los Ramones and totals 570km. At the same time, these installed and configured microturbines will benchmark the quality of our service offering as well as provide ample trust for future clients who wish to get involved in the low-cost generation and management of their own power.

Q: How can you convince current and potential clients of the long-term financial benefits of investing in environmentally-friendly solutions?

A: Many oilfield service companies insist on using conventional equipment, such as diesel engines, which pollute and require constant maintenance and part replacements. The financial benefits of our equipment are evident, as it generates clean and reliable electric energy, and can be operated with a wide range of different environmentally-friendly fuels without a need to use additional materials. Furthermore, compulsory maintenance is minimal. The equipment can be reviewed once a year without any need to suspend operations, thus reducing downtime. The total investment on the short, mid, and long term, including all repairs, replacements, and maintenance for the equipment, can be amortized in about two to three years depending on the model being used. We have presented proposals to companies such as Baker Hughes, Schlumberger, and Weatherford suggesting strategic electricity generation for electrocentrifuge pumps for secondary recovery purposes. This energy is reliable for both onshore and offshore pieces of equipment.