October 29, 2008
GE Energy to Provide Distribution Management System for EDF Energy Networks in London
GE Energy announced today that EDF Energy Networks is installing GE's power distribution management software system to help manage EDF's London electricity distribution network. The new distribution system completes the final phase in EDF's integration strategy that will benefit eight million customers in the United Kingdom.
Since privatization and regulation of the electricity networks in the United Kingdom 18 years ago, distribution network operators have delivered significant improvements in reliability, supported by new distribution management systems.
The software will enable EDF Energy Networks to maintain a reliable supply of electricity by helping to identify the location of faults and reroute power to minimize the impact on customers when faults do occur. The integration also will ensure that call handling, fault management and control of the company's electricity networks in London, the southeast and east of England will be managed by the same system. GE's management system will help EDF restore electricity supplies that sometimes can be reconnected before crews are sent.
Bob Gilligan, vice president of GE Energy's transmission and distribution business, said, "GE Energy is pleased to support EDF Energy Networks' integration strategy so the company can continue to provide customers across London with a reliable supply of electricity."
"At GE Energy we believe this system will support the U.K.'s expansion of renewable energy for the benefit of the environment because this technology facilitates the effective deployment of renewable energy," Gilligan added.
Traditionally, electricity has flowed one way, from a power station to the customer. However, as more renewable energy is generated by alternative sources, power will be entering the network from multiple locations. GE Energy's system may eventually provide EDF with live information about the network to help manage the distribution of renewable energy.
GE Energy believes the system can help the United Kingdom meet its goal to reduce the use of fossil fuels that generate greenhouse gases linked to climate change. The U.K. government aims to generate 15 percent of the country's energy from renewable sources by 2020 and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent of 1990 levels by 2050.
EDF Energy Networks is one of the United Kingdom's largest energy companies and provides power to a quarter of the United Kingdom's population via its electricity distribution networks in London, the southeast and the east of England. The company is a core part of EDF Group, one of Europe's largest power companies.
The distribution management system deployed by EDF is one of several solutions in GE's smart grid portfolio. The efficiency gains achieved by upgrading to a smarter grid from a conventional one would be akin to switching from a typewriter to a word processor. The smart grid is a banner for many products, including hardware, like smart meters and capacitors, and software, like geospatial information systems, distribution management systems and demand-side response. The smart grid is not "one" product, but rather a solution suite of products and software technologies improving the grid's overall performance.
About EDF Energy Networks
EDF Energy Networks supplies gas and electricity to more than five million customers and generates about five GW of energy from its coal and gas power stations, as well as combined heat and power plants and wind farms. Through "Our Climate and Social Commitments," EDF Energy has launched the biggest environmental and social packages of any U.K. energy company. The company also is a key player in national infrastructure projects including management of private electricity networks serving four London airports and the Channel Tunnel Rail Link, the country's first major railway in 100 years. EDF Energy employs nearly 13,000 people at locations across the United Kingdom and is a core part of EDF Group, one of Europe's largest power companies. EDF is the official energy utilities partner and sustainability partner of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
About GE Energy
GE Energy (www.ge.com/energy) is one of the world's leading suppliers of power generation and energy delivery technologies, with 2007 revenue of $22 billion. Based in Atlanta, Georgia, GE Energy works in all areas of the energy industry including coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear energy; renewable resources such as water, wind, solar and biogas; and other alternative fuels. Numerous GE Energy products are certified under ecomagination, GE's corporate-wide initiative to aggressively bring to market new technologies that will help customers meet pressing environmental challenges.
GE (NYSE: GE) is a diversified global infrastructure, finance and media company that is built to meet essential world needs. From energy, water, transportation and health to access to money and information, GE serves customers in more than 100 countries and employs more than 300,000 people worldwide. GE is Imagination at Work. For more information, visit the company's Web site at http://www.ge.com.