South African national utility Eskom announced on 28 June that the 796MW unit III of the giant Medupi coal power project has begun commercial operations. The unit is the fourth to be commissioned following unit VI on 23 August 2015, unit V on 3 April 2017 and unit IV on 28 November 2017. The unit is the first of those online to be supported by auxiliary plant systems on the northern side of the site as well as a new control and instrumentation system. Eskom will hope that the unit performs better than those already in operation. The operating units at both Medupi and Kusile power plants have been performing far below design expectations, with availability of around 40%. Eskom told African Energy in March that all remaining units at Medupi are expected to begin operating this year.
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