GE Energy Supplying 10 Jenbacher Gen-Sets For Australian Waste Coal Mine Gas Plant Technology Receives ecomagination Certification

GE Energy - 12.06.2005

GE Energy's Jenbacher gas engine business has been awarded a contract to provide 10 generator sets for a new 10.6 megawatt power plant that will use waste coal mine gas pumped from an active coal mine in the state of Queensland, Australia.

GE is supplying Clarke Energy Australia Pty. Ltd. (CEA) with 10 of its JGS 320 GS-S.L Jenbacher generator sets. Each Jenbacher unit will generate 1.06 megawatts of electricity.

The plant, to be commissioned in May 2006, is being built at the Oaky Creek coal mine in central Queensland. The Oaky Creek coal mine is located in the southern part of the Bowen Basin, about 200 kilometers west of the Queensland coastline.

While waste coal mine gas plants often draw methane from closed mines, the Jenbacher engines at Oaky Creek will be generating electricity at an operational coal mine. The sudden changes in the composition of waste coal mine gas from active mining create a variable fuel quality and supply, which places a greater demand on the engines that GE is able to meet through specially modified engine designs.

GE's Technology Offers Environmental, Economic Benefits Combustion of waste coal mine gas in Jenbacher gas engines allows the coal mine owners to mitigate the amount of the greenhouse gas that would otherwise be vented into the atmosphere. In addition, this application also makes sense economically, since a "wasted" source of energy is now being utilized for power generation. The power generated at the Oaky Creek site will be fed into Queensland's high-voltage grid.

The Oaky Creek project is consistent with Australia's industrial emissions reduction goals, given that methane has 21 times the global warming potential of carbon dioxide, the gas most closely identified with climate change.

CEA is a wholly owned subsidiary of England-based parent Clarke Energy Limited and a longtime distributor and service provider of GE Energy's gas engine business. CEA is supplying and installing the Jenbacher units as part of its turnkey project on behalf of Envirogen Pty. Ltd., a prominent developer and owner of alternative energy plants throughout Australia. Envirogen already operates Jenbacher gas engines at coal mine plants in Tahmoor and Teralba, Australia.

"Our positive prior experience and whole of life cost assessment compared with alternatives, determined our decision to opt for Jenbacher gas engines under the technically varying conditions of an active coal mine," said Jeff Rice, chief executive officer of Envirogen.

Application Receives ecomagination Certification The Jenbacher coal mine methane product line was recently certified as a GE ecomagination product, due to its cost-effectiveness, high-efficiency performance and measurable environmental advantages. Ecomagination (www.ge.com/ecomagination), is a GE commitment to develop and expand the use of new technologies that will help customers meet pressing environmental challenges. Launched in May of this year, ecomagination is at the forefront of the company's business initiatives. Under ecomagination, GE will invest $1.5 billion annually in research in cleaner technologies by 2010, up from $700 million in 2004.

Currently there are approximately 100 Jenbacher units, with a total electrical output of nearly 200 megawatts, running on coal mine methane worldwide. This installed fleet generates approximately 1.5 million megawatt-hours of electricity a year, which is equivalent to the annual power requirement of approximately 140,000 U.S. homes. Generating this amount of power with coal mine methane instead of natural gas saves the equivalent of approximately 13 billion cubic feet of natural gas per year.

GE's first Jenbacher systems that utilized coal mine gas were installed in Germany and England in the early 1980s.

GE Energy's Jenbacher gas engine business is a leading manufacturer of gas-fueled reciprocating engines, packaged generator sets and cogeneration systems for power generation.

 

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