GE to build Brazilian O&M centres

BRAZIL: Brazil GE has announced the construction of two service centres that will focus on the operation and maintenance programmes run by developers in the north-east regions of Chapada do Araripe and Garanhuns.

The centres will maintain GE 1.6MW turbines
The centres will maintain GE 1.6MW turbines

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According to GE, the units will be ready to operate in the last quarter of 2015. Each service centre will employ 50 professionals.

GE and developer Casa dos Ventos have three wind farm clusters under construction.

The Tianguá cluster, in the state of Ceará, will have 77 GE 1.6-100 wind turbines, with delivery scheduled for the second half of 2015.

There are two clusters in development in Garanhuns, in the state of Pernambuco, which will have 233 GE 1.7-100 turbines. This consists of 107 turbine at the Santa Brígida cluster. The remaining 126 turbines are in the São Clemente cluster.

In all, the three projects have a capacity of 530MW. Established in 2006, Casa dos Ventos has been developing projects in Ceará, Rio Grande do Norte, Pernambuco, Paraíba, Bahia and Piauí (states at the northeast of Brazil), totalling 4.8GW in deployment or operation.

Market sources recently reported that the Chinese CGN Meiya Power Holdings is in talks to acquire a minor stake in two projects being developed by Casa dos Ventos. The investment could range up to US$638 million.

This would be the first investment by a Chinese energy company, as opposed to a turbine maker, in the wind energy market in Latin America.

Speaking about the move, GE general manager for renewable energy in Latin America Jean-Claude Robert said: "Casa dos Ventos is recognised for the quality of the development of its projects, and we aim at keeping our relationship at that same level, which is why they are our main wind power customer in the Latin American market."

GE currently has more than 900 turbines in operation or or being installed in Brazil. GE chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt met with Casa dos Ventos chief Mario Araripe at the Brazilian company's HQ to consolidate the joint work and the bond between the two companies.

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