Global engineering and infrastructure advisory company Aurecon supported AngloGold Ashanti as Owner’s Engineer on two recently completed power plants. In 2017, AngloGold Ashanti commissioned the construction of a 40 MW power plant at Geita Gold Mine in the Mwanza region of north-western Tanzania. The following year, Aurecon was again appointed as Owner’s Engineer for the 30 MW power plant at Siguiri Gold Mine in the north-east of the Republic of Guinea.“High-efficiency Wärtsilä 32TS dual-fuel generators have been installed at both mines and the facilities are now fully operational. Our team and the client are well-pleased with the results,” says Pieter Jansen van Rensburg, Aurecon Principal Power Generation Engineer. The objective of both projects was to supply stable and reliable power to the mining operations. As the Owner’s Engineer in each case, Aurecon was involved from design through construction and the final commissioning.“The two power plants were designed to support the future operations of the gold mines. These captive power solutions, which are quite common in remote African locations, are used where utility grids are either unavailable or unreliable. Our role in the projects, whether as Owner’s Engineer or technical advisors, was in essence to reduce technical risks, confirm that the plants met the owner’s requirements and were constructed according to relevant engineering standards,” says Jansen van Rensburg.In addition to reviewing the Engineering, Procurement and Construction design, Aurecon performed risk studies and supplied oversight for factory testing, construction, commissioning and performance testing of both power plants. The company carried out electrical network integration studies to ensure safe and effective integration into the existing mine networks. For the Geita power plant, Aurecon also designed the overhead transmission line from the power plant to the process plant, and the fuel supply system from the fuel depot to the power plant.The challenges presented by these projects ranged from working in remote locations to the need to harness an extensive variety of technical expertise. Aurecon’s multidisciplinary team provided support and oversight in areas of project management, mechanical, electrical, control and instrumentation, geotechnical, civil and structural engineering, CAD, health, safety and environment, quality control, project controls and planning, document control, administration, contracting, risk assessment and construction.Sibu Mvana, Aurecon Unit Manager – Energy, comments: “One of our multitalented resident engineers was able to pick up Swahili during his time on site in Tanzania, and he learned French when he was in the Republic of Guinea. Our team’s can-do attitude assisted our client to deliver these projects successfully in other important ways: we were able to identify risks and suggest solutions around potential problems to make sure the client achieved the best possible outcome. The electricity from the mines supports local communities and it is rewarding to be a part of projects that will serve African communities for years to come.” Aurecon advises various clients throughout Africa in the field of power generation, including wind and solar power.