Inside the massive Siemens Charlotte Energy Hub, technicians are building a 402-MW natural gas turbine to serve more than 300,000 Duke Energy customers in the Carolinas, according to a new story by Duke Energy illumination write Heather Danenhower.
The unit’s engine, generator and main components weigh about four times more than a space shuttle and would snuggly fit inside an Olympic swimming pool. Some components are thinner than a sheet of paper, and others are made with lasers and robots.
As part of an innovative agreement, Siemens will build and test its newest natural gas combustion turbine technology, the SGT6-9000HL, at Duke Energy’s Lincoln Combustion Turbine Station near Denver, N.C., about 25 miles north of the Siemens manufacturing plant.
Duke Energy customers will receive all of the unit’s energy during a four-year testing period while only paying some fuel costs. When testing is finished in 2024, the company will receive the unit at a discount.
“Natural gas technology has broad and significant benefits for everyone both economically and environmentally,” said Richard McMahon, senior vice president for energy supply and finance at Edison Electric Institute. “This technology will produce cleaner energy more efficiently and help back up renewables like wind and solar.”
The unit is based on four generations of technologies and five previous models, starting with the SGT-2000E in the 1980s. The new unit is designed to last longer before maintenance is required and will be the most efficient of its type in Duke Energy’s fleet. This efficiency means customers get more energy for the same fuel cost.
Click here to read the entire story on the Duke and Siemens joint effort.