Sunday, September 04, 2005 | General Electric - Investing in Wind Power

General Electric - Investing in Wind Power
Thursday, August 25, 2005

This year, GE’s wind portfolio is expected to generate $2 billion in revenue, an anticipated increase in revenue of 300% over its first-year wind operations in 2002. This is based on orders and commitments calling for 1,600 wind turbines to be installed worldwide, totaling 2,400 megawatts for new wind power capacity worldwide.

"Wind power continues to be the fastest growing segment of the global energy industry, and it certainly is a very significant part of the diverse energy solutions portfolio that we offer to our customers around the world," said Mark Little, vice president - power generation of GE Energy. "The continuing advancement of wind power technology is a key element of ecomagination, our commitment to cleaner energy solutions, which is at the forefront of our company’s business initiatives.”

Investing in the Future
Highlighting its commitment to support its customers' wind energy needs, GE continues to expand its engineering staff and research and development capabilities dedicated to wind-related technology development. Recent customer-focused milestones include:

Enhancements to one of the most widely sold and tested megawatt-class machines in the global wind industry, GE's 1.5-megawatt wind turbine, which recently surpassed 3,000 installations worldwide.
The successful deployment of the industry’s first offshore wind plant built by GE solely to demonstrate its offshore technology and learn more about the rigors of wind energy installation and operations at sea. Owned and operated by GE, the Arklow Bank Wind Park in the Irish Sea, the world's first offshore wind project to use turbines over three megawatts, has completed more than a year of successful operation. Comprising seven of GE's 3.6-megawatt wind turbines, the plant was officially inaugurated during a May 26 ceremony attended by Bertie Ahern, the Irish Prime Minister (Taoiseach), and David Garman, Undersecretary of Energy for the U.S. Department of Energy.

The opening of two customer support and training centers. Located in Salzbergen, Germany, and Tehachapi, California, the facilities offer 24/7 response, and have facilitated an increase in GE’s 1.5-megawatt wind turbine availability to 98% fleetwide. In addition, GE’s Global Research-Europe Center was opened in Munich to support further technology R&D, including the increase of wind turbine reliability and performance.

Growth in China
GE also recently announced plans to supply wind turbines for the first large-scale project in mainland China’s Hebei Province. The 34.5-megawatt Shangyi Manjing Wind Farm will use 23 of GE’s 1.5-megawatt wind turbines.

Developed and owned by Guohua Energy Corporation Limited, the wind turbines are being installed on a 5 km by 5 km site located approximately 100 km from Zhangjiakou City. Commercial operation is expected by October 2005.

“The Shangyi Manjing Wind Farm is an excellent example of the growing global trend toward cleaner electricity choices,” said Robert Gleitz, general manager of GE Energy’s wind segment. “China has a vast wind resource and an increasing need for electricity. At GE, with a business history in China that reaches back 90 years, we’re pleased to support our local customers’ wind energy needs.”