The Richard M. Flynn Power Plant in Holtsville, Suffolk County, is a highly efficient and clean power plant whose economical generating output is sold into New York State’s wholesale electricity marketplace. The New York Power Authority (NYPA) placed the 135,000-kilowatt (kW) plant into service in 1994. The plant’s construction stemmed from a 20-year power purchase agreement with the Long Island Power Authority.
The Flynn plant’s operation centers on a a combined-cycle technology in which two generators are powered with one fuel supply.
In the first cycle, the fuel—usually natural gas—is burned, with the hot gases expanding against turbine blades to power a combustion turbine-generator capable of producing about 100,000 kW. Heat exhaust that is normally lost during this process is then captured to produce steam that powers a steam turbine-generator, capable of producing about 57,000 kW.
While ambient temperature can affect power production, the Flynn plant's combined-cycle system generates about 50 percent more electricity than the ordinary single-cycle power system. This also holds true for a second combined-cycle plant that NYPA completed in 2005 in Queens.
At the Flynn plant, we use natural gas—the cleanest of all fossil fuels—as our primary source of energy. We burn gas an average of 329 days a year, relying on low-sulfur oil as a backup the rest of the time.
The Power Authority also helps Long Islanders meet their electricity needs with its Long Island Sound Cable, a 26-mile underground and underwater transmission line from Consolidated Edison’s Sprain Brook Substation in Yonkers to NYPA’s East Garden City Substation in Hempstead. The line can carry up to 675,000 kW of power, or the equivalent of the output of a large power plant.