Belfort, France, December 8, 2011 — Electricite de France and GE announced plans to jointly develop and showcase the first FlexEfficiency 50 plant to be connected to a national grid. The announcement is the latest development in a 40-year strategic relationship between EDF and GE.
The FlexEfficiency 50 plant being co-developed by EDF and GE will showcase a combination of flexibility and efficiency with low emissions. The new combined-cycle plant will be located at Bouchain, an existing EDF power plant site in northern France, and will produce 510 MW, enough electricity for 600,000 French households. The FlexEfficiency 50 plant is the result of GE's $500 million investment in research and development to deliver cleaner and more efficient energy.
The plant is expected to achieve greater than 61 percent efficiency at base load, which will conserve natural gas and reduce the production of greenhouse gases. Its operating flexibility will enable the plant to respond quickly to fluctuations in grid demand, paving the way for greater use of renewable resources such as wind and solar.
As the U.S. and other international markets consider cleaner energy sources, EDF's decision to install the FlexEfficiency 50 plant will be an important example of how flexibility and efficiency can combine to enable greater use of renewable power globally.
In Bouchain, the introduction of the FlexEfficiency 50 plant will complement the existing and anticipated mix of power generating assets, while also conserving natural gas and reducing greenhouse gases.
The project announcement was made at GE's 50-hertz gas turbine manufacturing facility in Belfort, France, where the turbine at the heart of the FlexEfficiency 50 plant will be built. GE Energy is the only medium and heavy-duty gas turbine manufacturer in France, employing more than 2,000 people in Belfort.
Both EDF and GE will invest in the plant, which is scheduled to be brought into service in late 2015. The announcement is the latest proof point of a strategic relationship that has existed between the two companies for nearly 40 years. During that time, EDF has selected more than 120 GE turbines for projects totaling 12,000 MW of installed capacity.
GE's FlexEfficiency 50 plant is an integrated, highly efficient system that includes these key components: a next-generation 9FB Gas Turbine, a 109D-14 Steam Turbine that runs on the waste heat produced by the gas turbine, an advanced W28 Generator, a Mark Vle control system that links all of the technologies and a heat recovery steam generator.