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GE launches new Waukesha VGF gas engines with advanced controls

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

GE’s Distributed Power business has announced the introduction of its new Waukesha* VGF* high-speed gas engine models that, for the first time, combine the company’s proven compact gas engine design with advanced controls normally used in GE’s larger Waukesha units.

Offering advanced controls and after treatment capabilities as standard features, the VGF units give operators greater flexibility for on-site power, air/gas compression and drilling applications for oil and gas production compared to other engines available in the 300-600 horsepower high-speed range.

The VGF is adapting the controls and emissions reduction technologies from GE’s larger Waukesha VHP engine, the industry workhorse for gas compression and oilfield power generation. Previously used only for stationary applications before the upgrades, the new F18SE and H24SE VGF models will be available with EPA non-road (mobile) certification for air quality, allowing the units to also be deployed for mobile applications. The certification on the engine also includes coverage for certain stationary applications.

“Our new Waukesha VGF gas engines from GE offer greater flexibility and added value for operators to deploy our engines in difficult applications and high altitudes,” said Wouter-Jan van der Wurff, General Manager for gas engines up to 2 MW for GE’s Distributed Power business.

Until now, engine packagers would buy the engine from GE or another supplier and then the three-way catalyst and air-fuel ratio control systems from other suppliers. But with the introduction of GE’s new Waukesha VGF models with the emPact product offering, GE is offering packagers and end users a more beneficial “one-stop shop“ for the gas engine, controls and after treatment systems.

In addition to the advanced controls, GE’s two new Waukesha VGF models offer improved oil filtration for a healthier engine as well as improved oil cooling capabilities, allowing the unit to operate in even hotter ambient conditions. Additional enhancements include extending the life cycle of the cylinder heads, a new closed crankcase breathing system and a new high-altitude turbocharger coupled with a water-cooled wastegate. These engine improvements also will be offered to operators of existing VGF units in the field.

The new VGF models‘ top-end maintenance intervals have been extended 36%, which is a significant upgrade over the existing GSI engine and a 50 percent longer interval than competing engines. The major overhaul interval also is twice as long as offered by other engines. Longer intervals translate into less downtime and higher package availability. Finally, when it comes to servicing the internal components, the VGF is the only engine in its class that offers full access at the job site. The units also will operate for 1500 hours without an oil, filter and spark plug change, compared to 720 hours required by other engines. This is a key advantage over existing systems because it meets or exceeds EPA NESHAP maintenance guidelines.

The new VGF F18SE and H24SE engines with advanced controls already have been deployed for a half dozen successful USdemonstration projects to prove their advantages over existing engines, including projects in stationary gas compression and power generation as well as mobile power generation and air/gas compression.

The new engines will be commercially available in 1Q16. The new units were announced during the 2015 High Horsepower (HHP) Summit at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas. For more information, please visit GE’s booth #531.

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