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Siemens Gamesa to supply Norwegian wind project

October 26th, 2017

Siemens Gamesa is to supply the 281 MW Nordlicht onshore wind power project in Norway with a long-term service contract along with 67 new wind turbine units.

With a diversified investor’s base and highly efficient direct-drive wind turbines, the Norwegian onshore wind power project “Nordlicht” is currently one of Europe’s largest and most innovative developments in renewable energy.
Nordlicht onshore wind power project
Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy has received an order for the supply and installation of 67 units of its recently upgraded OptimaFlex wind turbine type SWT-DD-130. The project site is located west of the city of Tromsø in northern Norway on two neighboring mountains.

On Kvitfjell 47 units will be installed, and another 20 units will be installed on Raudfjell. The turbines are rated at 4.2 MW and are expected to provide an overall capacity of 281.4 MW. A service and maintenance agreement was also signed, covering service and maintenance for an extended turbine lifetime.

“Nordlicht” is the largest onshore wind project in Europe this year. Once commissioned in summer 2019, it will supply clean energy for approximately 50,000 Norwegian households. The Siemens Gamesa SWT-DD-130 OptimaFlex turbines will be installed on steel towers at hub heights of 85 meters. All units will be equipped and optimized to support site-specific wind speeds and cold climate conditions with a rating of 4.2 MW, cutting edge de-icing technology and digital load control.

 A long-term service program including 24/7 condition monitoring will allow for a significant extension of the turbine lifetime and guarantee the wind farm output for more than 20 years. This service approach together with the OptimaFlex feature of ongoing optimization allows the investors to derive maximum benefit of their asset.

The major investor in the project is the German pension fund “Ärzteversorgung Westfalen-Lippe” (ÄVWL), the transaction has been structured and is managed by Prime Capital. ÄVWL is an institution of the Medical Association of Westphalia-Lippe and is one of Germany’s largest occupational pension funds. Prime Capital AG is an independent financial services provider and asset management firm, specialized in Alternative Investments, in particular in Absolute Return, Infrastructure Investments and Private Debt. In the role of a co-investor, Siemens Financial Services Division is supporting the project. Grid connection and energy transmission technology will be provided by the Siemens Energy Management Division.

“We are proud to install the Nordlicht onshore wind power plant since Norway is an important wind market with excellent wind conditions and appropriate sites. This project shows the strength of Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy to provide an extended scope due to our close collaboration with Divisions of Siemens AG,” says Ricardo Chocarro, CEO Onshore at Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy. “In close collaboration with the customer we have achieved an optimized design and implemented innovations such as the OptimaFlex wind turbine technology and our long-term service program to allow for an extended operation time. Both innovations help our customers maximize their business case and generate highly attractive and sustainable earnings.”

Siemens Gamesa to supply Norwegian wind project

October 26th, 2017

Siemens Gamesa is to supply the 281 MW Nordlicht onshore wind power project in Norway with a long-term service contract along with 67 new wind turbine units.

With a diversified investor’s base and highly efficient direct-drive wind turbines, the Norwegian onshore wind power project “Nordlicht” is currently one of Europe’s largest and most innovative developments in renewable energy.
Nordlicht onshore wind power project
Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy has received an order for the supply and installation of 67 units of its recently upgraded OptimaFlex wind turbine type SWT-DD-130. The project site is located west of the city of Tromsø in northern Norway on two neighboring mountains.

On Kvitfjell 47 units will be installed, and another 20 units will be installed on Raudfjell. The turbines are rated at 4.2 MW and are expected to provide an overall capacity of 281.4 MW. A service and maintenance agreement was also signed, covering service and maintenance for an extended turbine lifetime.

“Nordlicht” is the largest onshore wind project in Europe this year. Once commissioned in summer 2019, it will supply clean energy for approximately 50,000 Norwegian households. The Siemens Gamesa SWT-DD-130 OptimaFlex turbines will be installed on steel towers at hub heights of 85 meters. All units will be equipped and optimized to support site-specific wind speeds and cold climate conditions with a rating of 4.2 MW, cutting edge de-icing technology and digital load control.

 A long-term service program including 24/7 condition monitoring will allow for a significant extension of the turbine lifetime and guarantee the wind farm output for more than 20 years. This service approach together with the OptimaFlex feature of ongoing optimization allows the investors to derive maximum benefit of their asset.

The major investor in the project is the German pension fund “Ärzteversorgung Westfalen-Lippe” (ÄVWL), the transaction has been structured and is managed by Prime Capital. ÄVWL is an institution of the Medical Association of Westphalia-Lippe and is one of Germany’s largest occupational pension funds. Prime Capital AG is an independent financial services provider and asset management firm, specialized in Alternative Investments, in particular in Absolute Return, Infrastructure Investments and Private Debt. In the role of a co-investor, Siemens Financial Services Division is supporting the project. Grid connection and energy transmission technology will be provided by the Siemens Energy Management Division.

“We are proud to install the Nordlicht onshore wind power plant since Norway is an important wind market with excellent wind conditions and appropriate sites. This project shows the strength of Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy to provide an extended scope due to our close collaboration with Divisions of Siemens AG,” says Ricardo Chocarro, CEO Onshore at Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy. “In close collaboration with the customer we have achieved an optimized design and implemented innovations such as the OptimaFlex wind turbine technology and our long-term service program to allow for an extended operation time. Both innovations help our customers maximize their business case and generate highly attractive and sustainable earnings.”

$60m ABB substation to feed nuclear power to UK grid

October 26th, 2017

A new indoor high-voltage substation at Shurton, England will feed electricity from Hinkley Point C nuclear power station into the national grid.

ABB has been awarded the $60m contract by National Grid to build the new high-voltage substation integrating electricity produced by Hinkley C nuclear in Somerset, feeding it into the power network. The order was booked in the third quarter of 2017.
ABB HPC Substation
Hinkley Point C will produce 3.2 GW of power – enough low-carbon electricity for around six million UK homes – making it one of the largest single power generation source connected to National Grid’s system. The substation, located to the southeast of the main Hinkley site, is a vital element in National Grid’s program to reinforce and upgrade the network to accommodate additional power and ensure of supply. 

ABB will design, manufacture and install the new 400 kilovolt (kV) substation that will provide double circuit connections to the existing substations at Taunton and Melksham. It will feature ABB’s Gas Insulated Switchgear (GIS) that will enable the substation to be constructed indoors within a compact building to make optimum use of the restricted space available on the site.

Gas Insulated Busbars will connect the switchgear to the overhead line and cable circuits. The project will also deliver digital control, and telecommunications systems based on ABB's AbilityTMplatform.

“This project is an illustration of ABB’s capability to deliver a complete design and build for critical high-value and complex substation projects”, said Claudio Facchin, president of ABB’s Power Grids division. “We will combine advanced protection, and communication systems with our GIS technology to deliver customer value, and reinforce our position as a partner of choice in enabling a stronger, smarter and greener grid.” 

Sue Adam, National Grid’s Head of Major Infrastructure Development, said: “This is a significant project for National Grid. Connecting this new low carbon source of energy into our network will help meet the country's increasing demand for sustainable energy.”

The compact indoor design of ABB’s GIS technology allows a space saving of up to 70 percent compared to conventional AIS. This compactness also makes extensions and retrofitting possible in confined space conditions which would not be possible with AIS technology. Furthermore, GIS technology increases supply reliability and availability while reducing maintenance requirements.

ABB is the world’s leading supplier of substations with voltage levels up to 1,200 kV. These substations enable the efficient and reliable transmission and distribution of electricity with minimum environmental impact, serving utility, industry and commercial customers as well as sectors like railways, urban and renewables

$60m ABB substation to feed nuclear power to UK grid

October 26th, 2017

A new indoor high-voltage substation at Shurton, England will feed electricity from Hinkley Point C nuclear power station into the national grid.

ABB has been awarded the $60m contract by National Grid to build the new high-voltage substation integrating electricity produced by Hinkley C nuclear in Somerset, feeding it into the power network. The order was booked in the third quarter of 2017.
ABB HPC Substation
Hinkley Point C will produce 3.2 GW of power – enough low-carbon electricity for around six million UK homes – making it one of the largest single power generation source connected to National Grid’s system. The substation, located to the southeast of the main Hinkley site, is a vital element in National Grid’s program to reinforce and upgrade the network to accommodate additional power and ensure of supply. 

ABB will design, manufacture and install the new 400 kilovolt (kV) substation that will provide double circuit connections to the existing substations at Taunton and Melksham. It will feature ABB’s Gas Insulated Switchgear (GIS) that will enable the substation to be constructed indoors within a compact building to make optimum use of the restricted space available on the site.

Gas Insulated Busbars will connect the switchgear to the overhead line and cable circuits. The project will also deliver digital control, and telecommunications systems based on ABB's AbilityTMplatform.

“This project is an illustration of ABB’s capability to deliver a complete design and build for critical high-value and complex substation projects”, said Claudio Facchin, president of ABB’s Power Grids division. “We will combine advanced protection, and communication systems with our GIS technology to deliver customer value, and reinforce our position as a partner of choice in enabling a stronger, smarter and greener grid.” 

Sue Adam, National Grid’s Head of Major Infrastructure Development, said: “This is a significant project for National Grid. Connecting this new low carbon source of energy into our network will help meet the country's increasing demand for sustainable energy.”

The compact indoor design of ABB’s GIS technology allows a space saving of up to 70 percent compared to conventional AIS. This compactness also makes extensions and retrofitting possible in confined space conditions which would not be possible with AIS technology. Furthermore, GIS technology increases supply reliability and availability while reducing maintenance requirements.

ABB is the world’s leading supplier of substations with voltage levels up to 1,200 kV. These substations enable the efficient and reliable transmission and distribution of electricity with minimum environmental impact, serving utility, industry and commercial customers as well as sectors like railways, urban and renewables

GE and Microsoft forge closer partnership over Predix platform

October 26th, 2017

General Electric and Microsoft are due to announce a deeper partnership involving GE’s Predix industrial internet platform and Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform.

The agreement broadly expands integration of Microsoft’s cloud software with GE’s Predix applications, Bill Ruh, Chief Executive of GE Digital, told Reuters.

Predix power plant technology Predix is a software platform developed by GE that connects industrial equipment such as power plants to computers that can predict failures and reduce operating costs. The software is at the heart of GE’s effort to turn itself into a “digital industrial” company.

The partnership, due to be announced on Wednesday by GE Chief Executive Officer John Flannery and Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella, comes days after GE announced a partnership with Apple.

Apple and GE worked together to come up with a tool for app developers to connect Apple’s iOS operating system more easily to Predix.

The Predix software connects sensor-laden industrial machines like wind turbines to data centres, so that streams of information from the machines can be analyzed to help predict failures and make the machines run more cost effectively.

GE expects the software to help generate $12bn in digital revenue by 2020, although there were delays in the process this year while system issues were being worked out.

The joint effort with Microsoft is focused initially on oil-and-gas and mining companies, but would also be applicable to other companies that run Microsoft software, which includes the vast majority of industrial companies, Ruh said. He declined to provide further details.

GE and Microsoft forge closer partnership over Predix platform

October 26th, 2017

General Electric and Microsoft are due to announce a deeper partnership involving GE’s Predix industrial internet platform and Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform.

The agreement broadly expands integration of Microsoft’s cloud software with GE’s Predix applications, Bill Ruh, Chief Executive of GE Digital, told Reuters.

Predix power plant technology Predix is a software platform developed by GE that connects industrial equipment such as power plants to computers that can predict failures and reduce operating costs. The software is at the heart of GE’s effort to turn itself into a “digital industrial” company.

The partnership, due to be announced on Wednesday by GE Chief Executive Officer John Flannery and Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella, comes days after GE announced a partnership with Apple.

Apple and GE worked together to come up with a tool for app developers to connect Apple’s iOS operating system more easily to Predix.

The Predix software connects sensor-laden industrial machines like wind turbines to data centres, so that streams of information from the machines can be analyzed to help predict failures and make the machines run more cost effectively.

GE expects the software to help generate $12bn in digital revenue by 2020, although there were delays in the process this year while system issues were being worked out.

The joint effort with Microsoft is focused initially on oil-and-gas and mining companies, but would also be applicable to other companies that run Microsoft software, which includes the vast majority of industrial companies, Ruh said. He declined to provide further details.

Saudi Aramco CEO plays down electric vehicle threat

October 25th, 2017

The head of the world’s largest oil company has acknowledged the rise in electric vehicles (EVs) but pointed out that it doesn’t represent a real transformation in relative terms.

Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser played down the impact of EVs on oil demand when interviewed by CNBC this week. His views run contrary to a recent report by Barclays who forecast that cleaner-burning cars could wipe out crude consumption nearly equal to annual output from Iran, OPEC's third-biggest oil producer, by 2025.
Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser
But while electric vehicle manufacturers are making "good progress," battery and hybrid cars still account for just a fraction of the overall market, Nasser told CNBC.

"Electric vehicles will continue to grow. They will take good market share, but it will be decades before they shoulder a significant percentage of the energy mix," he said.

The number of electric vehicles grew to just more than 2 million in 2016, up nearly 60 percent from the previous year, according to the International Energy Agency. They now make up about 0.2 percent of all cars on the road — a "very small percentage," in Nasser's view.

He also points out that hybrid-electric vehicles with gas engines make up a big chunk of the total. There were about 805,000 plug-in hybrid electric cars in the world in 2016, according to IEA. That's 40 percent of all electric vehicles.

By 2030, IEA projects the electric fleet could grow to 160 million, he noted. By that time, there will be 2 billion vehicles overall, Nasser estimates.

"So the number of conventional vehicles still in the market, even though they are more efficient for sure, is still a lot compared to what we have today," he told CNBC’s "Squawk Box" programme.

In a more conservative scenario, electric vehicles total 56 million by 2030, IEA reports. In another scenario in which the world tackles climate change aggressively, the electric vehicle market exceeds 200 million by that year.

A spokesperson for the European Automobile Manufacturers Association told Power Engineering International, “Alternative powertrains - including electric, hybrid, fuel-cell and natural gas-powered vehicles - will play an increasing role in the transport policy mix, and all ACEA’s members are investing heavily in them. To this end, more needs to be done to encourage consumers to buy alternatively-powered vehicles, for instance by putting in place the right incentives and deploying recharging infrastructure across the EU. In parallel, improving the internal combustion engine and clean diesel technology will continue to play an important role in years to come."

"The latest ACEA data show that electrically-chargeable vehicles accounted for 1.3 per cent of total car sales, hybrids for 2.6 per cent, and cars powered by propane or natural gas for 1.3 per cent.”

Saudi Aramco CEO plays down electric vehicle threat

October 25th, 2017

The head of the world’s largest oil company has acknowledged the rise in electric vehicles (EVs) but pointed out that it doesn’t represent a real transformation in relative terms.

Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser played down the impact of EVs on oil demand when interviewed by CNBC this week. His views run contrary to a recent report by Barclays who forecast that cleaner-burning cars could wipe out crude consumption nearly equal to annual output from Iran, OPEC's third-biggest oil producer, by 2025.
Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser
But while electric vehicle manufacturers are making "good progress," battery and hybrid cars still account for just a fraction of the overall market, Nasser told CNBC.

"Electric vehicles will continue to grow. They will take good market share, but it will be decades before they shoulder a significant percentage of the energy mix," he said.

The number of electric vehicles grew to just more than 2 million in 2016, up nearly 60 percent from the previous year, according to the International Energy Agency. They now make up about 0.2 percent of all cars on the road — a "very small percentage," in Nasser's view.

He also points out that hybrid-electric vehicles with gas engines make up a big chunk of the total. There were about 805,000 plug-in hybrid electric cars in the world in 2016, according to IEA. That's 40 percent of all electric vehicles.

By 2030, IEA projects the electric fleet could grow to 160 million, he noted. By that time, there will be 2 billion vehicles overall, Nasser estimates.

"So the number of conventional vehicles still in the market, even though they are more efficient for sure, is still a lot compared to what we have today," he told CNBC’s "Squawk Box" programme.

In a more conservative scenario, electric vehicles total 56 million by 2030, IEA reports. In another scenario in which the world tackles climate change aggressively, the electric vehicle market exceeds 200 million by that year.

Italy announces coal phase out and increased impetus on EVs

October 25th, 2017

The Italian government has announced a proposal to phase out coal-fired power plants by 2025.

The move follows similar decisions made by the UK, the Netherlands and Ireland among others. The Italian Industry Minister made the announcement on Tuesday presenting a consultation document on a new energy strategy.

“We have asked (grid company) Terna to identify the infrastructure needed,” Minister Carlo Calenda said in a parliamentary hearing on the document.

Reuters reports that Italy’s biggest utility Enel has already said it will not invest in new coal-fired power plants.

Minister Carlo Calenda
The new energy strategy, still under discussion, aims to reach the goal of 27 per cent of gross overall energy consumption from renewable power sources by 2030, the document showed.

The strategy, which should be approved by the government at the beginning of November, is also looking to speed up the introduction of vehicles powered by alternative fuels.

It aims to raise the number of electric vehicle charging stations to 19,000 by 2020.

Over a quarter of the 1,675 companies that owned or developed coal-fired power capacity since 2010 have entirely left the coal power business, according to new research from CoalSwarm and Greenpeace. This represents nearly 370 large coal-fired power plants - equivalent to nearly half a trillion US dollars in assets retired or not developed.

The research also shows that a total of 23 countries, states and cities will have either phased out coal-fired power plants or set a timeline to do so by 2030.

Italy announces coal phase out and increased impetus on EVs

October 25th, 2017

The Italian government has announced a proposal to phase out coal-fired power plants by 2025.

The move follows similar decisions made by the UK, the Netherlands and Ireland among others. The Italian Industry Minister made the announcement on Tuesday presenting a consultation document on a new energy strategy.

“We have asked (grid company) Terna to identify the infrastructure needed,” Minister Carlo Calenda said in a parliamentary hearing on the document.

Reuters reports that Italy’s biggest utility Enel has already said it will not invest in new coal-fired power plants.

Minister Carlo Calenda
The new energy strategy, still under discussion, aims to reach the goal of 27 per cent of gross overall energy consumption from renewable power sources by 2030, the document showed.

The strategy, which should be approved by the government at the beginning of November, is also looking to speed up the introduction of vehicles powered by alternative fuels.

It aims to raise the number of electric vehicle charging stations to 19,000 by 2020.

Over a quarter of the 1,675 companies that owned or developed coal-fired power capacity since 2010 have entirely left the coal power business, according to new research from CoalSwarm and Greenpeace. This represents nearly 370 large coal-fired power plants - equivalent to nearly half a trillion US dollars in assets retired or not developed.

The research also shows that a total of 23 countries, states and cities will have either phased out coal-fired power plants or set a timeline to do so by 2030.

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