GE intends to acquire Shannon-based FMC-Tech, a leading provider of real-time power line monitoring, to accelerate its commercialisation
of power grid technology. FMC-Tech is one of the dozen investments resulting from GE’s 2010 ecomagination Challenge: Powering the Grid Strategy.
Ecomagination is a $200 million open innovation challenge to find and fund the best ideas for bringing the power grid into the 21st century. Co-funded by four venture capital firms, the challenge aims to leverage GE’s scale, technical expertise and client relationships to bring new ideas to market quickly.
FMC-Tech will become part of GE Energy Services’ Digital Energy Smart Substation business. All employees will remain in Ireland. The acquisition is expected to be completed in July.
“With the acquisition of FMC Tech’s portfolio, GE will be able to provide a new level of grid intelligence to utilities, improving decision-making and streamlining operations with real-time information on power outages and available capacity on power lines,” explains Bob Gilligan, chief executive, digital energy for GE Energy Services. “Utility operators can better balance the load by managing capacity and optimizing the amount of power sent through a line. Maintenance and repair crews can be more effectively dispatched for increased productivity, improved reliability and greater customer satisfaction.”
FMC-Tech solutions are a key component of a utility’s distribution automation system that provide information on locating faults, providing dynamic line ratings and help manage maintenance and repair crews. The system is designed to easily integrate with supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA), energy management systems (EMS) and demand management systems (DMS)/outage management systems (OMS).
“FMC-Tech’s expertise in online power management and fault detection combined with GE’s distribution management expertise will drive faster technology development, implementation and broader-based solutions, which will enable a broader portfolio of utility management solutions,” he adds.
Ecomagination is GE’s business strategy to help meet customers’ demand for products that improve their bottom line and reduce their impact on the environment. This also will drive growth for GE that delivers for its investors. Ecomagination reflects GE’s commitment to invest in a future that creates innovative solutions to environmental challenges.
From 2010 to 2015, GE has committed to: doubling R&D to $ 10 billion, growing ecomagination revenues twice as fast as overall company revenue; reducing GE’s energy intensity 50 percent, reducing later consumption 25 percent, and inspiring a competitive energy future.