Home Tags PE Volume 100 Issue 10
PE Volume 100 Issue 10
In 25 years, we expect to deploy more natural gas-fueled, high-efficiency, combined-cycle plants. The coal-based technologies will continue to have a large Rankine cycle component with atmospheric circulating beds supple-menting the traditional pulverized-coal units in regions of the world with low-grade coal (such as China and India). Coal-based combined-cycle plants will begin to make inroads in areas of the world where efficiency and emissions are at a premium. We will see more pressurized-fl
As power plant designers and builders, we at Bechtel see a bright future for our industry. The demand for electricity will continue to grow, and the need for new plants will increase accordingly. But companies that develop and supply these plants must adapt to new ways of doing business if they expect to see the dawn of this `new age.`
Looking beyond the next 25 years, two technologies stand out that have the potential for drastically altering the supply-demand picture for electricity: electric-powered vehicles and decentralized, small-scale power supply systems. Neither technology is economic today, and major technological barriers need to be overcome before they can become successful; yet success in either dimension is not a wild stretch of the imagination.
Deregulation and its accompanying regulatory and legislative changes are the keys to today`s widespread innovations in the electric utility industry. As deregulation saturates the market, utilities eager to gain customers are lowering prices and offering diversified services. These changes will continue to reverberate well into the 21st century. Just as AT&T and the Baby Bells struck out on their own, electric utilities are changing their way of thinking to stay in business and keep their custom