• GE Powerwave+™ Impulse Cleaning System Selected by Xcel Energy and Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency for Online Boiler Cleaning.
• Switch by Xcel Energy’s and SMMPA’s Jointly-Owned Sherburne County Unit 3 Will Help Eliminate Tube Erosion, Reduce Outages, Improve Efficiency, and Should Save About $20 Million.
In an effort to increase reliability and reduce operating costs, Xcel Energy and Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency (SMMPA) have contracted GE Energy to supply online impulse cleaning systems for their largest U.S. generating unit (900 megawatts). By using GE’s (NYSE: GE) Powerwave+ Impulse Cleaning System, the project is estimated to save $20 million over the next six years by eliminating tube erosion and helping to prevent a major boiler tube replacement project.
Xcel Energy, one of the nation’s leading utilities, and SMMPA, a Minnesota joint action agency, chose GE based on their comfort with GE’s broad experience and references. Xcel also tested the ability of the Powerwave+ Impulse Cleaning System in the area where cleaning proves to be most difficult and found it to be effective at keeping their heat transfer surfaces clean.
“The installation of this technology will decrease the number of unplanned outages in the affected section of the boiler and provide greater value for our customers,” said Aaron Brixius, Xcel Energy project manager. “The Sherburne County boiler engineering team, led by Dave Anderson, has been monitoring this technology for five years and worked with the project team to develop this project. Several site inspection visits to previous installations were made, and a thorough trial test was completed over a period of two months. Xcel Energy and SMMPA are committed to operational excellence and providing our customers reliable energy at a greater value. The review of the Powerwave+ technology made us comfortable that this project would satisfy those ideals.”
The Powerwave+ Impulse cleaning technology can clean boiler surfaces more efficiently than traditional methods, reduce emissions and improve the overall efficiency of coal-fired boilers without the tube erosion issues caused by other cleaning systems.
The high-energy impulse technology—a derivative of acoustic cleaning—has earned a spot in GE’s ecomagination portfolio, following a rigorous review process confirming its environmental and economic benefits. Ecomagination is GE’s clean energy business strategy to drive growth and solve the world’s energy challenges. It brings technology, innovation, investment and partnership to deliver a sustainable future for generations to come.
“This is a new and innovative approach to online cleaning which fits with Xcel Energy’s goal to be an environmental leader in the industry while maintaining focus on its core business,” said David Chapin, GE’s Powerwave lead project manager. “The payback for Xcel and SMMPA is twofold: the reduction in tube erosion and also improved efficiency. This should result in a decline in coal consumption, CO2 and SO2 emissions, maintenance and cleaning costs during outages and the number of forced outages throughout the year. Powerwave+ cleaning system is smarter technology that changes the game for anyone having these issues, and we’re working with numerous customers who we expect will see similar results, including potentially significant savings.”
The ecomagination product review process confirmed the following benefits of the Powerwave+ cleaning system:
Installing Powerwave+ cleaning systems on 10 percent of all coal-fired boilers in the United States could reduce CO2 emissions by more than 790,000 metric tons per year, equivalent to the CO2 emissions from approximately 151,000 cars on U.S. roads annually.
If GE Powerwave+ cleaning systems were installed on 10 percent of all coal-fired boilers in the United States, boiler operators could produce an additional 1.09 million MWh of electricity per year without burning additional coal. This represents an additional revenue opportunity of $76 million at an electricity price of $70 per MWh.
Learn more about Powerwave+ Impulse Cleaning Systems.
About GE ecomagination portfolio
Ecomagination is GE’s business strategy to help meet customers’ demand for products that improve their bottom line and reduce their impact on the environment. This also will drive growth for GE that delivers for its investors. Ecomagination reflects GE’s commitment to invest in a future that creates innovative solutions to environmental challenges. From 2010 to 2015, GE has committed to: doubling R&D investments in cleaner technologies to $ 10 billion; growing ecomagination revenues twice as fast as overall company revenue; reducing GE’s energy intensity 50 percent; reducing water consumption 25 percent; and inspiring a competitive energy future.
GE (ge.com) is an advanced technology, services and finance company taking on the world’s toughest challenges. Dedicated to innovation in energy, health, transportation and infrastructure, GE operates in more than 100 countries and employs about 300,000 people worldwide.
GE also serves the energy sector by providing technology and service solutions that are based on a commitment to quality and innovation. The company continues to invest in new technology solutions and grow through strategic acquisitions to strengthen its local presence and better serve customers around the world. The businesses that comprise GE Energy (ge.com/energy)—GE Power & Water, GE Energy Services and GE Oil & Gas—work together with more than 90,000 global employees and 2010 revenues of $38 billion, to provide integrated product and service solutions in all areas of the energy industry including coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear energy; renewable resources such as water, wind, solar and biogas; as well as other alternative fuels and new grid modernization technologies to meet 21st century energy needs.
Howard Masto, Masto Public Relations
P: +1 518 786 6488 / E: howard.masto[.]ge.com.
Gina DeRossi, Masto Public Relations
P: +1 518 786 6488 / E: Gina.derossi[.]mastopr.com.
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