BOUCHAIN, France — GE and EDF on Friday officially began operation of the first ever combined-cycle power plant equipped with GE’s HA turbine in Bouchain, France, launching a new era of power generation technology and digital integration. GE also announced that the company has been recognized by Guinness World Records for powering the world’s most efficient combined-cycle power plant based on an achieved efficiency rate of up to 62.22 percent at the Bouchain plant.
“Today we are making history with this power plant for the future,” said Steve Bolze, president and CEO of GE Power. “We are thrilled to be acknowledged by Guinness World Records for powering the world’s most efficient combined-cycle power plant, and we are also very proud of the industry-leading flexibility and reliability this turbine provides to our customers. We look forward to continuing to work with EDF and providing services to ensure the ongoing high performance of the Bouchain plant in the years to come.”
In addition to achieving unprecedented levels of efficiency, GE’s HA gas turbine delivers more flexibility than ever before, capable of reaching full power in less than 30 minutes. This helps pave the way for greater use of renewable energy by allowing partners to respond quickly to fluctuations in grid demand, integrate renewables onto the grid and adapt quickly to weather changes. These advances support the recent Paris COP21 agreement, where 195 countries pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, placing more emphasis on cleaner electric power opportunities.
“By commissioning this new generation thermal plant, EDF demonstrates its intent to apply the best available technologies on the market to make its French thermal power plants more energy efficient while supporting the energy transition,” said Jean-Bernard Lévy, CEO of EDF. “This also confirms EDF’s innovation pledge under the CAP 2030 program.”
The Bouchain plant is also an important demonstration of GE’s Digital Power Plant capabilities, which have helped drive the record-breaking levels of efficiency by unlocking power that was previously inaccessible. Capabilities, including the digital control system, use real-time data to deliver better plant outcomes with stable and efficient operations, while providing valuable predictive insights for higher reliability and optimization.
With a generating capability of more than 605 MW, the Bouchain plant will generate the equivalent power needed to supply more than 680,000 homes. In addition, the HA compressor flows air at a rate that could pump up the Goodyear blimp in 10 seconds, and the tip of the last blade in the 9HA.01 moves at 1200 mph/1931 kph -- 1.5 times the speed of sound.
“Today is an important milestone in our industry, one that would not have been possible without the hard work and dedication of the many GE and EDF employees across the world who are committed to a future of increased energy efficiency,” said Joe Mastrangelo, president and CEO of Gas Power Systems for GE Power. “By tapping into the broader GE Store, we are able to collaborate on these initiatives and bring together the right hardware and software tools, as well as people to deliver these results.”