First Wind Selects GE's Wind PowerUp* Platform to Increase Output from U.S. Wind Farms

Oct 09, 2014
  • First Wind has implemented PowerUp services at Milford I and Milford II farms in Utah, and plans to expand its use further into U.S. GE wind turbine fleet
  • In one year, more than 1,400 wind turbines contracted under the PowerUp platform
  • With PowerUp services installed at Milford, First Wind could realize up to 18,000 megawatt hours (MW/h) of additional generation, equivalent to the energy needed to power 1,500 American homes for a year

NEW YORK-Oct. 9, 2014-GE (NYSE: GE) today announced it has contracted with renewable power producer First Wind to implement GE’s PowerUp services on 107 GE 1.5-77 and 1.5-82.5 wind turbines at the Milford I and Milford II wind farms in Utah.

PowerUp is a software-enabled platform that can increase a wind farm’s output by up to 5 percent-taking into account environmental conditions-by adjusting and customizing control curves and performance dials, allowing First Wind’s units to provide enhanced economics and power output. In addition to software, First Wind will also receive hardware upgrades to assist with enhancing energy production as part of the PowerUp platform.

Taking into account site and environmental conditions, PowerUp services could provide an increase of up to 18,000 MW/h of generation from the two farms, or enough equivalent energy to power 1,500 American homes for a year.

First Wind has implemented the first phase of the PowerUp platform at Milford I and II, and plans to expand it further into their U.S. wind turbine fleet. At low wind speed sites such as Milford I and II, PowerUp services can provide essential enhancement to power production and wind farm economics.

“At First Wind, innovative ways of realizing more power from our assets to provide the most renewable energy in the most cost effective way for our customers is key,” said Paul Gaynor, chief executive officer at First Wind. “The PowerUp platform allows us to generate more wind energy for our customers from our installed turbines, and demonstrates more than ever wind’s true competitiveness.”

In its first year of operation, GE’s PowerUp services have been selected for more than 1,400 customer units.  The PowerUp platform works by adjusting performance dials, including speed, torque, pitch, aerodynamics, and turbine controls after analyzing site conditions, tailoring and improving the power output of each wind turbine.

“The ability to put more wind power on to the grid and enhance the economics of wind energy makes a big difference for our customers like First Wind, and encourages investment into more renewable energy,” said Anne McEntee, president and CEO of GE’s renewable energy business. “We are excited to see the value PowerUp services will provide for First Wind and their customers.”

PowerUp services are part of GE’s brilliant wind platform, which harnesses the power of the Industrial Internet to analyze tens of thousands of data points on a wind farm every second, driving higher power output, increasing services productivity and creating new revenue streams for customers. It is one of GE’s Predictivity* technologies, using connectivity and advanced analytics, and is an ecomagination qualified product.

*Trademark of the General Electric Company.

About First Wind

First Wind is an independent renewable energy company exclusively focused on the development, financing, construction, ownership and operation of utility-scale renewable energy projects in the United States. Based in Boston, First Wind is operating or building renewable energy projects in the Northeast, the West and Hawaii, with combined capacity of nearly 1,300 megawatts (MW) - enough to power more than 375,000 homes each year. For more information on First Wind, please visit www.firstwind.com.

About GE

GE (NYSE: GE) works on things that matter. The best people and the best technologies taking on the toughest challenges. Finding solutions in energy, health and home, transportation and finance. Building, powering, moving and curing the world. Not just imagining. Doing. GE works. For more information, visit the company's website at www.ge.com.

About GE Power & Water

GE Power & Water provides customers with a broad array of power generation, energy delivery and water process technologies to solve their challenges locally. Power & Water works in all areas of the energy industry including renewable resources such as wind and solar; biogas and alternative fuels; and coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear energy. The business also develops advanced technologies to help solve the world’s most complex challenges related to water availability and quality. Power & Water’s six business units include Distributed Power, Nuclear Energy, Power Generation Products, Power Generation Services, Renewable Energy and Water & Process Technologies. Headquartered in Schenectady, N.Y., Power & Water is GE’s largest industrial business.

Follow GE Power & Water and GE’s renewables business on Twitter @GE_PowerWater and @GErenewables.

Melissa Quesnel
GE Power
melissa1.quesnel@ge.com
+1 518 385 4747
+1 518 248 6985

Adam Tucker
GE Power
adam.tucker@ge.com
+1 518 227 2463