LATE NEWS: Wood Group, Siemens update industry on joint venture at Power-Gen

At a press conference conducted during Power-Gen International that ended only few minutes ago (Tuesday, November 12, 3 pm US East Coast time), Mark Dobler, CEO Wood Group GTS, Neil Sigmund, CEO TurboCare, and Chris Watson, CFO Wood Group GTS, updated the electric power industry on developments surrounding the recently announced joint venture between Wood Group GTS (51%) and Siemens’ TurboCare business (49%).



Dobler, Sigmund, and Watson comprise the senior leadership team for the JV, which has yet to be named. Final approvals on the joint venture are expected in the first quarter of 2014. The business will have about 4500 employees worldwide and generate approximately $1 billion in annual revenue.

All of Wood Group’s maintenance and power solutions businesses—except for its Rolls Wood Group, TransCanada Turbines, and Sulzer Wood JVs—are incorporated in the new entity along with TurboCare’s aftermarket gas turbine, steam turbine, and generator design, repair, and manufacturing services.

Dobler described the new business this way: “The JV will bring together Wood Group’s capabilities in the areas of asset operations, maintenance, risk management, and life-cycle optimization, with the aftermarket design, repair, and manufacturing capabilities of TurboCare to deliver greater flexibility, greater market reach, and an expanded footprint to service customers. The JV will be a significant integrated rotating-equipment service provider to the global power generation, oil and gas, and industrial sectors.”

How the joint venture will benefit powerplant owner/operators is evident in the details presented below for each of the new entity’s four primary business activities:

OEM. The JV will be the OEM provider of parts, components, and associated overhaul and repair services for the generally more mature Fiat and Westinghouse (up to W501D4) turbines, and through Wood Group Pratt & Whitney, the P&W FT4 and GG4 products.

Authorized service provider to OEMs. The JV will be an authorized provider of certain maintenance, supply-chain, and construction services to OEMs—including Siemens—for gas turbines, steam turbines, generators, and other rotating equipment.

Independent aftermarket service provider. The JV will provide a broad independent aftermarket capability for gas turbines, steam turbines, and generators across a range of OEM equipment—including GE and Solar Turbines. This capability will include parts, components, and associated overhaul and repair services.

O&M and EPC service provider. The JV will provide O&M and EPC services for powerplants in cogeneration, combined cycle, and simple-cycle gas-turbine configurations.

TICA offers users complimentary membership; offer ends December 31

The Turbine Inlet Cooling Assn, Naperville, Ill, launched an online forum for owner/operators of gas turbines in early October to facilitate discussions exclusively among TICA user members. Executive Director Dharam (Don) Punwani encourages powerplant owner/operators to accept the organization’s limited-time offer (expires December 31) of complimentary membership for one year to participate in the forum and take advantage of other benefits as well.

Visit the TICA website to access a bibliography of TIC information, database of TIC installations, and an online calculator for evaluating the performance of various cooling technologies.

Hill to succeed Fusco as Calpine’s CEO next May; company has a good third quarter





Calpine Corp’s board of directors has selected Thad Hill, the company’s president/COO, to succeed Jack Fusco as CEO when the latter assumes the role of executive chairman of the board in May 2014. The change is part of a planned leadership transition. Hill joined Calpine in September 2008 from NRG Texas where he served as president in 2007-2008.

Calpine Corp is said to generate more electricity than any other independent power producer in America. Its fleet of 93 powerplants totals 28 GW of nameplate capacity in operation or under construction. The company reported an increase in third-quarter operating revenue of 18.3%, year over year; net income increased by more than 11%.

Beyond the financials, Calpine plant and central engineering personnel contributed to the company’s success in the third quarter by:

• Producing more than 30 million MWh.

• Achieving a record-low year-to-date fleet-wide forced outage factor of 1.4%.

• Delivering record-high year-to-date fleet-wide starting reliability of 98.8%.

• Reducing year-to-date plant operating expenses by about 7%.

• Maintaining top-quartile safety metrics: 0.85 total recordable incident rate year-to-date.

Significant plant developments in the third quarter include the following:

• Russell City Energy Center commenced commercial operation in August. The facility, which produces 429 MW of base-load and 464 MW of peak capacity, is under contract to deliver its full output to PG&E for 10 years.

• Los Esteros Critical Energy Facility was recommissioned as a combined-cycle plant and resumed delivering power to the grid in August. The facility began life in 2003 as a four-unit LM6000 peaking facility with a rated output of 188 MW. Conversion to combined cycle increased generating capability to 309 MW while increasing efficiency and environmental performance.

• Osprey Energy Center achieved 100% starting reliability and 0% forced-outage factor.

• Pastoria Energy Center achieved 92% capacity factor and 99.8% availability.

Avoid snow: Gas turbines, transformers highlight February user meetings in the South

Time to begin planning your winter conference agenda. For those living north of the Mason-Dixon line, one or more of the following February meetings may meet your information needs and cure shivering as well:

Life of a Transformer™, Feb 2-7, Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Doble Engineering Co’s annual seminar provides training on the most critical aspects of large power transformers. The event is highly recommended by a majority of past attendees.

501D5-D5A Users, Mid-Year Meeting, Feb 5-6, Orlando. Details as they become available at Contact Chairman Gabe Fleck to register at no cost.

501F Users Group and 501G Users Group, Annual Meetings and joint Vendor Fair, Feb 16-20, Rancho Mirage, Calif, The Westin Mission Hills Resort & Spa. Contact: Caren Genovese, meeting coordinator.

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