Stanwell Power Station is a 4 x 365 megawatt coal-fired power station that has achieved world-class reliability and availability since construction. It employs an efficient operational and maintenance program incorporating an unattended control room operating regime. The first unit was commissioned in 1992 and is located at Stanwell, south-west of Rockhampton in Queensland. It supplies electricity for distribution to customers via the National Electricity Market.
To achieve its consistent outcomes, Stanwell uses a robust and highly-reliable control and protection system known as the Integrated Control and Monitoring System (ICMS). The computing systems that underpin the ICMS exhibited definite signs of degrading reliability and were approaching the end of their service life. They needed to be replaced with a modern distributed control system.
Partnering for Success
The Stanwell Corporation initially engaged WSP to assist with the business case for the control system replacement project. Subsequently, we have reviewed the technical specification and the benchmarking of the alarm system.
The first project scope also included the delivery of a replacement operator training simulator, which employed similar components to the replacement control systems in the real plant. An operator training simulator is an essential tool to build and maintain skill competency in an environment where there is minimal opportunity for on-the-job experience and training for abnormal situations. The simulator also facilitates refresher training for operators that are not on full-time shifts.
Following the contract award for the distributed control systems and simulator supply, our role was extended. We performed:
- Detail design review
- Inspection and test plan review
- Control system and simulator factory witness testing
- Simulator site acceptance testing
The first unit cutover and commissioning of the new control system occurred in 2016 and we were also involved in the witness of the commissioning and the unit control performance testing later that year.