GE Supplies First Gas Turbine to Tobago to Enhance Grid Stability and Growth

The LM2500 aeroderivative gas turbine was inaugurated at the Trinidad & Tobago Electricity Commission’s Cove Power Plant in November 2018 and is currently supplying 20 megawatts of electricity, or the equivalent electricity needed by 28,000 households across the island nation.

Derived from the CF6 family of aircraft engines, GE’s LM2500 has more than 2,200 units sold around the world and is one of the world’s top-selling gas turbines globally with more than 79 million operating hours of experience. The powerful gas turbine has a lightweight and compact footprint which makes it ideal for island power applications such as the Cove Power Plant, and it delivers power with a reliability greater than 99 percent, helping to support Trinidad and Tobago’s grid, which experiences extremes in weather and storms.

Aeroderivative gas turbines, which evolved from decades of aviation experience, also provide a firming benefit to grids: their cycling capability allows for multiple starts and stops every day, as well as high partial load efficiency and deep turndown flexibility, making them an ideal choice for small islands with fast growing grids—including those seeking to integrate renewable energy sources in the near future.

“The island of Tobago is poised for productive growth and our current electricity transmission and distribution systems can at this time meet demand with great reliability,” said Courtenay Mark, Chief Technical Officer of the Trinidad and Tobago Electricity Commission. “To fuel this growth and the corresponding rise in demand for electricity, it made sense to tender publicly for an additional generator. Consequently, the GE LM2500 aeroderivative, with its small footprint and high level of reliability was chosen and we look forward to its performance for years to come.”

In addition to being the most reliable gas turbine in its class, Cove Power’s LM2500 produces electricity in an environmentally conscious way by reducing harmful emissions and water consumption.  The LM2500 features a Dry Low Emissions (DLE) upgrade which helps the unit reach NOx levels as low as 15ppm, 40 percent lower than World Bank Standards and over 90 percent lower than a common alternative solution of reciprocating engines.

“Tobago’s growth combined with its small land footprint make it a perfect application for our industry leading and reliable aeroderivative products like the LM2500,” said Alvaro Anzola, GE Power’s commercial leader for Latin America. “With the gas turbine and emissions package installed at Cove Power, the facility will be able to produce reliable, sustainable electricity for Tobagonian citizens for years to come.”

The contract also includes a multi-year agreement for ten years of maintenance services for the site. GE’s history in Trinidad dates back to 1950’s in the twin island republic. GE technology provides 79% of the installed generation in Trinidad and Tobago and continues to provide improvements through parts and services to ensure continued reliability of the national grid.

GE’s experience with aeroderivative gas turbines is built on a more than fifty-year legacy of producing the leading aviation technology with more than 100 million operating hours of experience, and these products are uniquely suited to the rapidly transforming energy landscape. With a small footprint, high flexibility, reliability, and power density, aeroderivative gas turbines continue to be a dynamic and popular power technology globally.

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