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GE Energy agrees license deal with Canadian firm

GE Energy's wind business has entered into a patent license agreement with AAER Inc, a Canadian turbine manufacturer that is opening a plant this year in Bromont, Quebec, to make blades and assemble nacelles. The company has a technology licensing agreement with Germany's Fuhrländer AG. GE holds patents on certain aspects of variable speed wind turbine technology in both Canada and the United States, acquired through its purchase of Enron Wind. The patent has been subject to a long standing dispute between its various American owners and German manufacturer Enercon. GE and Enercon called a truce in May 2004 by agreeing to a "cross licence with worldwide and long term application." Since then GE has reached licensing agreements with other manufacturers utilising variable speed technology in their turbines, including German Repower, now controlled by India's Suzlon, and Spanish Acciona. Through the deal with AAER "the two companies will continue to independently manufacture and sell wind turbines," says GE. "The agreement with AAER is the latest example of GE's strategy of licensing our key patents for wind turbine control technologies to help suppliers and customers meet the rapidly growing demand for clean, efficient wind energy," says the company's Victor Abate.

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