GE gas engines in milestone demonstration drilling rig on-site power demonstration project in China


HOUSTON -- GE’s Distributed Power business has announced that China’s leading rig manufacturer, HongHua Group Ltd., has completed commissioning of the first three Waukesha mobileFLEX gas engines that are powering a 5,000-m deep rig for new shale gas projects located near Deyang City, Sichuan Province, China. The country is seeking to boost its production of unconventional gas supplies to meet Asia’s growing energy needs.

The first three Waukesha units were commissioned in August 2015 as part of a nearly 3-megawatt (MW) on-site power demonstration project between HongHua Electric, a subsidiary of HongHua Group Ltd., and rig owner Sinopec, which are evaluating the use of the natural gas-fueled Waukesha units as an alternative to diesel engines. The project marks GE’s first deployment of its Waukesha mobileFLEX engines for a drilling application outside the U.S.

The demonstration project is the result of a multi-year frame agreement that HongHua signed with GE in 2014 to use the company’s Waukesha engines to provide reliable power for its drilling rigs. Headquartered in Chengdu, Sichuan, HongHua is the largest exporter of drilling rigs in China and one of the largest land rig manufacturers in the world.

“We are always looking to incorporate new technologies like GE’s Waukesha mobileFLEX gas engine systems that add value to our drilling rigs for our customers,” said Mi Zhang, president of HongHua. “We are pleased to support China’s efforts to reduce industrial greenhouse gas emissions by demonstrating the economic and environmental benefits of using the Waukesha units as a cost-effective alternative to diesel gen-sets in our rigs.”

Using the Waukesha units, HongHua’s customers can utilize locally sourced natural gas to fuel the engines instead of relying on diesel fuel that needs to be transported over long distances to drilling sites.

“With environmental regulations in China and other countries becoming tighter, drilling rig operators are increasingly turning to cleaner-burning natural gas solutions in their drilling rigs as an alternative to traditional diesel gen-sets,” said Bright Yin, regional sales leader for China for GE’s Distributed Power business. “This demonstration project with HongHua Electric and Sinopec is showcasing the benefits of our Waukesha mobileFLEX gas engines as a cost-effective option for drill rig operators in the global unconventional gas sector.”


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