The ceremony of the official departure of the turbine from Elbląg to Opole was attended by the representatives of the central and local authorities, the representatives of investor and the partners of General Electric, the host of the ceremony, including the suppliers and contractors working on the project.
Michael Keroulle, Chief Commercial Officer of GE Steam Power Systems, said: “We are very proud that the generators and steam turbines for the Opole project are supplied by GE’s own Elbląg factory. The machines, designed by Polish engineers and manufactured here, at our Polish factory, are among the most technologically advanced coal-fired power generation equipment in the world with a very low emission level compared to the global average. This is a great example of what GE and Poland can deliver here and should serve as an example to the rest of the world”.
The construction of power units Nos 5 and 6 with a total capacity of 1,800 MWe at the PGE Power Plant in Opole is the biggest project in the energy industry in Poland after 1989. In August 2016, a modern 50WT25E-158W generator, designed and manufactured at the GE Power facility in Wrocław, was already sent to Opole. Now, the company is supplying the subsequent component of the project, a steam turbine, designed and manufactured by the GE Power Turbine Factory in Elbląg.
Beata Stelmach, GE CEO for Poland and Baltic, says “GE has been present in Poland already for 25 years and in this period we have managed to develop complex operations in various industries. We are particularly proud of our share in the modernization of the Polish energy industry. The investment in Opole is a perfect example of cooperation and technological progress. 75% of the Opole project has been sourced out of GE’s Polish footprint. Every job at our facilities in Poland generates another four in the supply chain. And only at the site of Elbląg has GE a workforce of 1,400”.
The progress of works at the power plant in Opole has exceeded 70% and it is being continued according to schedule. Employment on this construction site has exceeded 5,000 by 300 companies involved in project realization. The construction is performed on the EPC principle (engineering, procurement, construction), i.e. it includes the design, delivery and construction of power units on a turnkey basis. Two constructed units- each with a gross capacity of 900 MWe - will be fuelled with coal. They will consume about 4.1 million tonnes of coal per year. The application of modern technologies supplied by GE will allow for obtaining a net energy efficiency for the power unit at the level of about 46% and for reducing the emissions, including CO2 emissions, by about 20 per cent per unit of generated energy. New units will generate up to 13.4 TWh of electric energy annually, which covers about 8% of the domestic output. The life cycle of the installed power units has been planned for 35 years of operation with a period of installed power consumption of up to 8,000 hours/year.
By designing and supplying key devices for the project, the GE partnership in the development of Opole Power Plant confirms active and effective participation by the company in the modernization of the Polish energy sector. The company’s efforts in this respect have also been highlighted on January 26 with the signing of the agreement on strategic cooperation in the area of energy and aviation by General Electric and the Ministry of Development. “In cooperation with Polish EPC partners, GE would be even able to secure a local supply much beyond 75% out of Poland”, adds Beata Stelmach.
The GE Power Turbine Factory in Elbląg has engineered all turbine components for power units Nos 5 and 6 in Opole, i.e. a high pressure module (HP), a medium pressure module (MP), a set of bearing racks, a set of HP and MP valve chambers, foundation elements and MP inlet pipelines. Due to its capacity of 900 MW, the manufactured turbine is also of a specific size. The HP module 8.05 x 2.87 x 3.25 m in size is of a gross weight of 85 tonnes and the MP module 10.63 x 4.01 x 5.00 m in size reaches a gross weight of 166.8 tonnes.
Ryszard Wasiłek, Vice-President of the Management Board for Development, said: “The construction of two new units in Opole is strategic for PGE to keep its leading position in the field of power generation . It will also enable our Group to modernize and refresh our generation fleet. Thanks to the joint efforts, the next phases of this project will be realized smoothly and according to the schedule, which places this project among leading undertakings in the Polish energy sector”.
Due to their size and weight, the individual turbine elements will be transported from Elbląg to Opole by land or water, as appropriate, with respect to their size. The HP module assembled at the Department of Casings and Turbine Assembly will be transported by a dedicated low-chassis vehicle with a pilot. The MP module will be transported with a hydraulic gantry to the bank of the Elbląg Canal, from which it will be directed via Gdańsk to Szczecin and then along the Odra River to Opole. The delivery of the turbine modules to the construction site in Opole is scheduled for February and March, respectively, followed by their installation.
Upon supporting the modernization of coal power plants in Poland, GE offers a number of solutions, which go in line with the power market idea that aims at providing flexibility of energy production by determination of the power mix that is the most advantageous to Poland. It is directly connected with the fact that coal has been so far and will remain in the nearest future the main supply source for domestic power plants. At the same time, demand for electric energy will be constantly increasing. GE can support Poland in the modernization of the power industry by delivering solutions which guarantee the highest power efficiency for the plants upon maintaining reductions in CO2 emissions. The application of the latest technologies allows for cleaner coal-based generation compatible with all environmental standards required by the European Union.
GE Power Turbine Factory in Elbląg
The GE Power Turbine Factory in Elbląg was founded in 1948. It manufactures complete steam turbines of various power ratings as well as modules, sub-assemblies and spare parts of a weight of up to 120 tonnes for steam, gas and nuclear power plants. The facility applies modern technological solutions in the production of turbine blades, such as five-axis automated processing centers and computer measurements of the blade profiles. Over 370 turbines manufactured by the facility in Elbląg operate at power plants all over the world. Elbląg also houses our Metallurgical Plant, one of the biggest and the most modern foundries in the world and the only such factory in the GE Group, dedicated to the production of complex and heavy castings for the energy sector. The steel foundry has been operating in Elbląg since 1948 and manufactures steel castings of a unit weight of 3,500 to 70,000 kg. The iron foundry, commissioned in 2009, offers ductile iron castings of a unit weight of 15,000 to 55,000 kg. The castings manufactured at our Metallurgical Plant are the basic components of turbines which operate both in Poland and globally.
GE is the world’s Digital Industrial Company, transforming industry with software-defined machines and solutions that are connected, responsive and predictive. GE is organized around a global exchange of knowledge, the “GE Store”, through which each business shares and accesses the same technology, markets, structure and intellect. Each invention further fuels innovation and application across our industrial sectors. With people, services, technology and scale, GE delivers better outcomes for customers by speaking the language of industry.
GE in Poland
GE entered the Polish market in 1992. It currently employs 6,500 people in the industrial sector. The GE Group in Poland owns, among other things, three plants specializing in the manufacture of electric products (in Kłodzko, Łódź and Bielsko-Biała), two facilities of GE Aviation (Dzierżoniów and Bielsko-Biała) and three GE power plants (a turbine manufacturing plant and foundry in Elbląg and a generator manufacturing plant in Wrocław). The EDC (Engineering Design Centre) has also been operating in Warsaw for 16 years. It was founded as a partnership between GE and the Institute of Aviation. Since 1992 the company has invested USD 670 million in Poland and its annual expenditure on research and development isabout USD 100 million.
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