The power transformer connected to Unit 1 (Steam Turbine 1) at Egbin thermal power station, otherwise known as Unit Transformer 1, is ready to return to service after a protracted technical fault on the equipment. Due to the transformer fault, the steam turbine (ST1) has remained out of service since 2015, leading to a capacity loss of 220MW from the plant as the generator cannot send out energy without the attached transformer.
With this development, available capacity from the country’s electricity grid is expected to shore up by 220MW when the transformer is fully restored to service by next week. This would also translate into an improvement in power supply in the country.
The transformer has been out of service since August 2015 when its circuit breaker tripped on Bulcholz Relay, a fault that is considered very serious and requires invasive maintenance before been restored to service. On a visit to GTA-Skipper, Ikorodu factory where the rehabilitation had been going on, revealed that the Bulcholz fault was caused by damage to the insulation of the transformer windings due to excessive heat.
When our correspondent made inquiries to know why it has taken 14 months to effect repairs on the transformer considering the huge losses to the company and the country, the management of the power company attributed the delay to lack of funds. We also gathered that a substantial number of equipment and plants which should be adding to improved power capacity are stranded due to unavailability of funds for maintenance.
However, the official national daily broadcast stating the status of system equipment, released by the National Control Center, Osogbo and published on the website of Federal Ministry of Work, Power and Housing, has always indicated that the unit 1 has always sent out energy contrary to the real situation on ground.