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Texas Medical Center “Takes Flight” With GE Technology

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 10:21am
HOUSTON -- (BUSINESS WIRE)-- A GE aeroderivative gas turbine, developed with the same reliability, efficiency and emissions technology that powers many of the world’s aircraft, is now powering one of the world’s largest medical centers.

At a dedication ceremony held recently, Thermal Energy Corporation (TECO) announced the completion of its first combined heat and power (CHP) plant at the Texas Medical Center in Houston, Texas. The new CHP facility, with GE’s LM6000 PD Sprint® aeroderivative gas turbine at its heart, is providing 48 megawatts of power. The turbine exhaust also is being used to generate steam for the physical plant at the medical facility.

“In early August, Texas experienced the highest single-day electricity demand in history, and TECO didn’t have to buy one kilowatt from the electric grid to serve the Texas Medical Center’s thermal loads,” said Stephen K. Swinson, president and CEO of TECO. “That was possible because of the new combined heat and power plant being celebrated today. In essence, our 48-MW, highly efficient plant ensured that other, older, lower-efficiency plants in the state didn’t have to come online to meet that need. Since energy efficiency equates to environmental stewardship, all of us are winners because of TECO’s new CHP plant.”

TECO’s highly efficient CHP plant will reduce CO2 emissions by approximately 305,455 tons per year than would be the case if the heat and power were purchased separately off the grid—the equivalent of removing 53,000 U.S. cars off the roads.

“Using the same technology that has been proven to be cleaner, safer and reliable on aircraft engines through millions of hours of successful operation, our aeroderivative gas turbine is now helping to provide the same benefits to the Texas Medical Center,” said Darryl Wilson, vice president—aeroderivative gas turbines for GE Power & Water. “This project strengthens our commitment to promote energy efficiency. Our highly efficient LM6000-PD Sprint is equipped with the world’s leading dry low emissions combustion systems for aeroderivative gas turbines, allowing this CHP system to achieve efficiency levels of more than 78 percent.”

GE’s LM6000-PD Sprint was manufactured at the GE Industrial aeroderivative gas turbine facility in Cincinnati, Ohio. The overall package construction and testing was conducted at the GE Energy packaging facility in Houston, Texas. The LM6000-PD Sprint aeroderivative gas turbine is a certified product under GE’s “ecomagination” initiative.

To earn ecomagination approval, a product is evaluated for its ability to improve a customer's environmental and operating performance. The rigorous, multi-tiered review process is concluded with an independent, third-party audit to ensure accuracy and thorough documentation of technological performance.

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