As part of the feasibility study, a second, unidentified company is looking at options to integrate an air inlet cooling system to further increase efficiency at the PP9 plant. Industry sources say SEC has yet to decide on the technical details of the project and whether to opt for one or two additional combined cycle blocks. The tender for the PP9 expansion is expected to be released in the first quarter of 2004.

On a second major power project – the 1,050-MW stage 2 expansion of the Shouaiba plant in the Western Province – SEC is evaluating technical proposals submitted in September. Industry sources say commercial offers are expected to be opened by early December. France’s Alstomand a Japanese group of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) with Mitsubishi Corporationare the two bidders for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract (MEED 3:10:03).

Bids are to be submitted for several other power plant projects in the coming weeks. On 10 November, EPC bids are due for three expansion projects at the Asir, Bisha and Jizan power stations in the south. On 11 November, SEC is set to receive bids for the supply and installation of two gas turbines with generating capacity of at least 55 MW at Riyadh’s PP7 power plant, while on 1 December bids are due for the expansion of the Arar and Rafah power plants (MEED 10:10:03).