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GE's LM6000 PC Sprint aeroderivative gas turbine will bolster the Czech grid, contributing an additional 50 MW of power once operational.
GE disclosed that it has clinched a contract with UCED Group, the energy division of Czech investment company CREDITAS Group. As part of the deal, GE will deliver a LM6000 PC Sprint aeroderivative gas turbine to augment the capacity of UCED's Prostějov reserve power plant. The new equipment, scheduled for delivery in early 2024, is expected to enhance grid stability and promote the proliferation of renewable energy in the Czech Republic by contributing approximately 50 MW to the national power transmission system.
The project aligns with the Czech government's strategic goal of diversifying energy sources through the increased use of gas and renewables, as well as reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2030 relative to 2005 levels.
Despite the decline of greenhouse gas emissions in the Czech Republic since 1990, the country still ranks as the fourth highest per capita emitter in the EU, as reported by a McKinsey sustainability report. A transition away from coal could significantly decrease emission intensity by 2030, given the country's substantial energy-intensive industry sector.
Richard Holešinský, Investment Director at UCED, stated: "The expansion of Prostějov power plant with a GE’s LM6000 aeroderivative gas turbine supports the Czech government’s main target to diversify energy sources and is another step in our path forward on our strategy to become a leader in the energy sector. We are committed to becoming a leader in the new reserve power segment: we selected GE’s aero technology for its fast installation, small footprint, and its operating flexibility."
One distinguishing feature of the selected technology is its quick start-up time, which is essential for maintaining grid stability in the face of variable energy sources like renewables. The GE turbine is currently capable of operating on over 40% hydrogen, potentially leading to a lower-emission footprint for the plant.
Joseph Anis, President & CEO, Europe, Middle East & Africa, GE Gas Power, highlighted the plant's significance. "This plant plays a significant role in supporting the diversification of energy sources,” Anis said. “It will be key to supply lower-carbon intensity and flexible generation capacity to the grid that will provide more reliable electric power service to Czech industries and citizens."
By 2030, UCED intends to extend its power complex in the Czech Republic to 1,000 MW, with projected investments exceeding CZK 20 billion. The Prostějov power plant will form part of UCED's "virtual power plant," a network of decentralized, interconnected energy sources managed from a single control room, primarily fueled by gas—whether natural, bio, or hydrogen-blended—along with solar parks, wind farms, thermal and biomass plants.