Introduction

Dear colleagues,

In the attempt to disseminate the positive practice and results of technological development concerning power generation problems, Society of Thermal Engineers of Serbia, following successful biannual International events POWER PLANTS since 2004, is organizing International Conference POWER PLANTS 2016, in cooperation with the Electric Power Industry of Serbia (EPS), under the auspices of the Ministry of Mining and Energy of the Republic of Serbia, Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development  of the Republic of Serbia and Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection of the Republic of Serbia. The Conference POWER PLANTS 2016 is foreseen to gather energy policy makers, company managers, researchers, technical experts, environmental engineers and the other professionals actively involved in the strategic, economic, social and environmental aspects of the research, development and operation of Power Industry, mostly from the member countries signatories of the TREATY establishing ENERGY COMMUNITY of the SOUTH EASTERN EUROPE (ECSEE) and from other countries, concerned with topics and implementation of the ECSEE TREATY.

In the last 20 years Power Plants in SEE countries due to economy transition problems, local conflicts, war destructions and financial crisis, have been functioning in a very difficult and specific exploitation conditions of disturbed and closed market, resulting in remarkable decrease in financial support for maintenance but with lot of exploitation problems. The most important among them are malfunctions, damages and irregular functioning of the equipment in the Power Plants caused by imposed conditions and, first of all, due to decreased investments in maintenance. Intensive exploitation of plants under such circumstances led to the decrease of energy efficiency, reliability, availability and business efficiency of Power Plants, along with relative increase of environmental pollution (soil, waterways and air).

On the other hand, economy transition towards market economy, the consolidation and transformation/transition of Power Industry companies toward competing subject on the united free market of electrical energy according to ECSEE TREATY imposed various problems and professional questions to the management and experts in Power Plants. These problems are related to increasing reliability, availability, energy efficiency, i.e. productivity and ability to compete in order to meet the international market competition in a better way and also to fit in the sustainable energy development concept. High level of expert knowledge and efficiency of all professionals, involved in power generation are the key factors for solving these problems. We are sure that the exchange of scientific and expert knowledge and experience, expected to take place on the Conference, can significantly help in solving these problems.

Having in mind the importance and research priorities, the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development  of the Republic of Serbia under programs and Technology Development - Energy, Mining and Energy Efficiency, financially supports chosen projects of the defined priority topics, that are about to create technological improvements and prerequisites for increasing energy efficiency in the existing plants of the technological system of power generation in ‘EPS’. The Conference is a chance for the researchers to disseminate achieved results and to point out the potential application in power generation practice.

Power Plants and their technological systems in the SEE countries are relatively old. The problems of their life cycle extension, of capital repair, modernization, revitalization, introduction of new technologies especially to reduce pollution problems, and of building new capacities have been present since the 90’s of 20th century. Financial opportunities and conditions for more intensive revitalization, modernization and investing appeared since then, especially since ECSEE TREATY in action. Therefore, it is obvious that the important part of the Conference will be dedicated to the exchange of scientific and expert information and experience of that kind, including Power Plant revitalization experience and results  in SEE countries in last few years.

Relatively old fashion technical and technological solutions for equipment in technological systems of power generation in the SEE countries, as well as the long period with low level investments, are the reasons for considerable environmental impact (soil, waterways and air), much more than by contemporary plants in developed countries. The current need for improving Power Plants Systems to a level which is, from the ecological point of view, close to that accepted by the developed countries in European Union, points out that the environmental pollution problems, and environmental systems for reduction of SOx, NOx, PM and CO2 emission will be of special attention at the Conference.

Dr. Predrag Stefanović,
President of the Organizing Committee