Growing with our own power

The power line feeding the plant that pumps water for fracturing is now up and running, using self-generated energy. The benefits include reliability, cost savings, and greater sustainability.

Following an investment of USD 4.5 million, the power line feeding all the gas wells has been put into operation; 12,500 meters of a 33 kV line. This involved laying some 50,000 meters of cable, setting up 110 concrete posts and building two transformer stations.

Most of the power produced—90%—goes to pumping the water used for fracturing operations from the Neuquén River to the wells. Based on the calculation of an average duration of 30 days per fracture, with about ten fractures happening a year, the new line will produce savings of some USD 100,000 per month.

Thanks to a USD 4.5 million investment, the power line feeding all the gas wells has been put into operation. -

However, the main benefit is reliability. As the electricity supplied to the water pumping system is directly linked to the fracture times of the wells, having its own supply ensures that the system is available 99.8% of the time, with only four hours of interruption per year.

"From 2017 until now, in such an unstable economic context, this has been about putting our money on the growth we expected to see," analyzed Germán Rubio, Facilities Manager, as he discussed the commitment to an investment with a higher-than-average repayment rate.

Generating electricity using treated gas from the CPF, a processing facility that separates gas from hydrocarbons, adds an environmental benefit as the operation is designed to improve energy efficiency, reducing CO2 emissions by around 9 tons/year.

The project involved 68 people working directly on the task and included contributions from over 15 national manufacturing companies that were able to overcome the current supply chain difficulties affecting materials from cables to concrete, due to contextual restrictions.

The areas of Supply, Logistics, Maintenance, Production, CPF Operations, Water Transfer Operations, HSE, Security and Facilities were involved in the initiative, ensuring a virtuous circle of work.

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