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Utility Operator

Onward Energy

Location: Mankato, Minnesota
Type: Temporary (unspecified), Non-Remote
Posted on: March 17, 2024
Utility Operator
The Company
Onward Energy is an independent power platform that owns and operates over 6,000 MW of utility-scale wind, solar and natural gas generation projects across the U.S. Our Vision is to reliably power a sustainable future. Our Mission is that as North America’s premier independent power generator, we will deliver renewable and reliable power to our customers, opportunities to our associates, sustainable returns to the families who invest in us, and a better world to the next generation. Based in New York, Denver, and Charlotte, Onward Energy is a company where people and power are always on. We are where renewable meets reliable. See for more information.
The Mankato Energy Center (MEC) is a 720-megawatt natural gas-fired combined-cycle facility located within the city limits on the northern edge of the City of Mankato, Minnesota. The project operates in the MISO power market and sells energy under contract to Northern States Power (NSP), a subsidiary of Xcel Energy. MEC I became commercially operational in July 2006 in a 1x1 configuration and is contracted through July 2026. In 2019 MEC II began commercial operations and is contracted with NSP through 2039. MEC I has a Siemens 501F-D3 combustion turbine rated at approximately 198 MW (at ISO Conditions) with a Nooter Eriksen HRSG. MEC II has a Siemens 501F-D4 combustion turbine rated at approximately 204 MW (at ISO Conditions) with a Nooter Eriksen HRSG. Both units deliver steam to a single Toshiba TCDF-40L steam turbine rated at 330MW.
The Utility Operator will be responsible for the safe and efficient operation of all power plant equipment and assist with maintenance tasks as assigned. The Utility Operator reports to the O&M Manager and receives direction from the Operations Manager & Maintenance Manager. The Utility Operator may work with maintenance personnel or as a maintenance person on matters/issues pertaining to maintenance.
The Responsibilities
• Participate in training program and will become qualified as an Operations and Maintenance Technician II.
• Perform all station shift operation and maintenance, including startup and shutdown of main plant components and auxiliaries.
• Conduct routine tours of the plant to inspect equipment, provide feedback to the Control Room Operator and to the employees.
• Comply with all site safety requirements and procedures. Identify safety hazards and take corrective actions, as necessary.
• Assist with unloading bulk offloads of plant chemicals as required.
• Perform and maintain housekeeping standards and duties.
• Perform routine preventive and predictive maintenance on all systems and equipment; support corrective maintenance efforts on selected equipment when properly trained or supervised.
• Perform other duties necessary to fulfill plant requirements.
• Display routine proficiency improvements towards becoming qualified as an Operations and Maintenance Technician II.
• Communicate with other company personnel onsite and at other locations.
• Assist other team members and work with all departments to support the Mankato Energy Center facility in achieving their goals.
• Work weekends and nights as needed and must have the ability to work shifts on an as needed basis.
• The Utility Operator operates from established and well-known procedures under general directions. The Utility Operator encounters recurring work situations of high complexity, with occasional variations from the norm.
• The Utility Operator must perform all his or her activities in a safe manner, in compliance with all environmental permits at all times.
• The Utility Operator must effectively communicate information to supervisors and fellow plant personnel, relative to the condition of the plant equipment and performance and provide suggestions for plant improvements.
• All employees have the responsibility to both the customer and their co-workers to do the job right the first time and to ensure the customer’s needs are being met.
• Other duties as assigned.
• High School Diploma, degree from a technical/vocational school, military service or equivalent required.
• Some power plant experience in operations and/or maintenance is desired.
• Knowledge of mechanical and electrical equipment, including motors, pumps, boilers, fluid systems. Chemical handling, water treatment systems, pollution control equipment, AC and DC electrical distribution and control systems, etc. and associated maintenance functions is desired.
• Knowledge of and ability to understand fundamental principles related to physics, mathematics, AC& DC electrical theory, heat transfer and fluid flow, thermal dynamics, and chemistry.
• Ability to operate valves, switches, controls, keyboards, and other devices associated with power plants.
• Ability to use basic hand tools, portable electric and pneumatic tools, and basic rigging equipment such as winches, hoists, and slings.
• Strong verbal and written communication skills and interpersonal skills and possess the ability to learn.
• Ability to follow both verbal and written instructions.
• Ability to exercise good judgment and make sound decisions.
• Excellent organizational skills with attention to detail, accuracy, and timeliness.
• Strong analytical and problem-solving skills.
• Ability to interact and communicate well with individuals in all areas of the company and outside vendors.
• Ability to demonstrate basic computer knowledge of Word, Excel, Power Point, and various other programs.
• Valid U.S. Driver license with acceptable MVR history, if applicable.
The Physical Requirements
Must be able to accomplish physical requirements with or without reasonable accommodation.
• Associate will be required to adhere to large amounts of standing, walking, bending, squatting, and lifting. May be required to lift, carry, and move up to 50 lbs. Will use arms and hands to signal, grab, hold, turn, push, and pull objects, materials, controls, and tools. Will occasionally work at heights, climb ladders, stairways, and work off of platforms. Will use vision abilities to focus, see short and long distances, colors, depth perception and peripheral vision. Will be required to wear personal protective equipment (PPE) including but not limited to hard hat, safety glasses/goggles, ear plugs/muffs, masks/respirators, safety vests, gloves and steel-toe boots.
• Able to hear (at some dB limit of loss) in order to hear plant alarms, equipment condition, and to receive oral instructions.
• Able to see and smell to determine plant operating conditions and to avoid safety hazards.
The Onward Energy team is comprised of industry professionals who embrace collaboration, dedication, and challenging work while also being down to earth.
Performing this job without full/focused attention may cause serious injury or even fatality. Work is generally performed inside the power plant but may work in all weather conditions ranging from warm/hot - cool/cold. Occasional rain. Noise levels will be moderate to high. Job site will contain light to heavy equipment vehicles, small to large equipment, materials, communication equipment and tools. People standing, walking, sitting, signaling, and talking. Bells, whistles, and alarms.
Onward Energy total rewards philosophy is motivated by a key tenet of People First and offers associates a comprehensive total rewards package which includes market competitive compensation, health, life insurance, and retirement savings benefits.
If you require an accommodation for any part of the employment process due to a disability to .
Eeo Statement
Onward Energy is an Affirmative Action Employer, Females/Minority/Veterans/Disabled/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity.
Please note this job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the employee for this job. Duties, responsibilities, and activities may change at any time with or without notice.
Management and Manufacturing