GE (NYSE: GE) has secured more than $800 million in commitments to supply wind and gas turbines for projects in Brazil that will produce 1.4 gigawatts of electricity—40 percent of the total amount awarded in energy auctions conducted recently by Brazil’s National Electric Power Agency.
The A-3 and Reserve energy auctions, which took place August 17-18, will supply 51 energy projects in Brazil with a total gross capacity of 3.9 gigawatts. GE won all of the natural gas power generation commitments and will be supplying 7FA Gas Turbine combined-cycle technology for more than 1 gigawatt of projects. In addition, commitments for at least 378 megawatts of GE’s 1.6-megawatt wind turbine technology have been made, with many projects still in process.
“These awards reinforce our position as a leading provider of reliable and well-proven energy technologies for Brazil and Latin America,” said Steve Bolze, president and CEO of GE Power & Water. “Our latest 7FA Gas Turbines and advanced 1.6 wind turbines represent very cost-effective electricity solutions in the transparent and competitive Brazil energy auctions, in which all of the major global OEMs participated.”
According to Brazil’s Energy Ministry, the country needs to increase its electricity generation capacity by 50 percent over the next 10 years. Brazil has relied heavily on hydropower for its electricity, and the latest auctions extend the country’s commitment to diversify its energy supply by adding more natural gas and renewable energy to the mix. Since 2004, Brazil has been holding energy auctions as the main procurement mechanism for distribution companies to acquire energy to meet these demands. Under this system, auctions of capacity from new generation projects are held three to five years in advance of delivery dates.
GE’s Frame 7FA Gas Turbines are members of the company’s installed fleet of advanced technology F class machines, which have compiled more than 36 million hours of service worldwide. GE’s 1.6 megawatt-series wind turbine builds on the proven performance of the GE 1.5-megawatt wind turbine, known as the industry workhorse with more than 16,500 installed worldwide.
The wind turbines will go into service in the first half of 2014, while the gas turbines will be used in projects that are expected to enter commercial operation by 2014.
In Brazil’s 2009 and 2010 auctions, GE won commitments to supply more than 800 megawatts of power using 1.5/1.6 wind turbines. This month, construction is being completed on the first 1.6 wind turbine that was part of that auction.