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.
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.