The new plant would be run independently of the existing power station with its own entrance off Fourth Drove. The whole site would be constructed on a small section of land (approximately half a hectare) where the fuel oil tanks are currently located.
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The plant’s main engine house would resemble a warehouse structure (no more than 14 metres in height) and would contain up to five small reciprocating gas engines. The heights of the chimneys are being calculated but shouldn’t be taller than 30 metres, which is half the height of the two older chimneys at Peterborough which were 60 metres high. The graphics enclosed have been designed to reflect the maximum scale of our plans.
Unlike the existing plant, which uses gas turbines, we’re proposing to use technology similar to a car engine to generate power. Reciprocating engines burn fuel, in this case gas, with air to produce hot gases that are used to drive a piston up and down. In a car the power generated by the piston is used to drive the wheels. However in a power plant like this, the motion of the pistons will be used to drive the generator, which produces the electricity.
The plant would be operated as a highly flexible ‘peaking plant’ meaning that they can reach full load from a cold standstill within five minutes. To put this into context, a larger conventional power station would take several hours.
The plant would typically run for only a few hours on weekdays to meet periods of high demand or to provide back-up power when it’s needed. Once built the site would be remotely operated, only need occasional maintenance visits and would not mean an increase in traffic on the estate.