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90 MW IPP power plant breaks Kenyan electricity backlog

  • Picture 009_Cropped

The Rabai Power Plant is a 90 MW heavy fuel oil Independent Power Producer (IPP) project located near Mombasa in Kenya.

The Rabai Power Plant is the most efficient and among the cleanest thermal fuel plants in East Africa.

The plant is designed to set new standards in terms of meeting stringent international, environmental and social requirements. 

The project is founded on a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) on a Build-Own-Operate-Transfer (BOOT) arrangement with the Kenya Power & Lighting Company Ltd. (KPLC).

The plant’s 90 MW output is sufficient to provide power to over 400,000 households and businesses.

Behind the power plant stands BWSC as project developer, turnkey contractor and constructor as well as investor. BWSC owns 25.5% of the Rabai Power Plant and 51% of the Rabai Operation & Maintenance Ltd.

Operation and Maintenance (O&M)

BWSC founded a joint venture, Rabai Operation & Maintenance Ltd. (ROML) with the purpose of performing O&M for a period of 20 years.

50 staff are operating and maintaining the plant’s 24-hour operation and delivery of fuel. ROML ensures the fulfillment of all necessary maintenance and support tasks as well as high reliability through proven technology and extensive operational experience.

Project success factors

  • Excellent planning skills to meet the stringent time frame - start up of operation 4 months ahead of the contractual completion date
  • Experienced developers of projects in difficult environments
  • A visionary and supportive lending group having a long-term view of the political and economic situation in Kenya.

Technical details

Local and international best practices have formed the basis of the Rabai Power Plant. BWSC has utilised the unique and well-proven concept - Combined Diesel Cycle concept - as technical basis for the project, thereby ensuring efficient service and maintenance.
The power plant consists of five 17.5 MW 18V46 Wärtsilä 4-stroke medium speed diesel engines each coupled to a generator. The engines provide dependable power production and high availability ensuring optimal plant performance.
Heat energy is utilised to enhance the efficiency of the plant. Steam is generated from the exhaust gas through use of heat recovery boilers. The steam is then used both for heating and for driving a steam turbine generator which improves the overall efficiency of the plant.

The Rabai Power Plant is unrivaled as the most efficient thermal plant in East Africa.


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Did you know that:
The Rabai Power Plant is one of the largest single infrastructure investments concluded since the present Government came to power

The power plant has twice been awarded “African Power Deal of the Year 2008”

The actual date of commercial operation start was 4 months ahead of contractual start of commercial operation

The Rabai Power Plant was built in just over 1 year

The plant’s 90 MW output is sufficient to provide power to up to 400,000 households and businesses

The Rabai Power Plant is the most efficient thermal fuel plant in East Africa.
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