GE Vernova invests in Fierro Service Center in Spain to boost power plant generator service capabilities

GE Vernova’s Gas Power business (NYSE: GE) announced today an expected investment of over $5 million in new technology and increased services capabilities at the Fierro Service Center in Andoian, Spain to meet the unique and growing need for services maintenance for aging gas power plants. Between 1998 and 2001, approximately 330 gigawatts (GW) of gas turbine equipment was sold worldwide, an amount equal to all the gas turbines ordered in the 15 years prior to 1998. GE Vernova added more than 350 gas turbines in a combined cycle configuration in 2002 and over 300 units the following year—and the investment into this facility will help support the growing demand for service work across this fleet.

This commitment is focused on expanding the company’s Fierro Service Center to help repair GE Vernova’s F-Class generators installed in Europe and across the world. The Center, located in Andoain, Spain, about 15 km south of San Sebastian, in the North of Spain, is expected to improve the shop flow while adding approximately 30 jobs, new equipment, and adopting lean processes to service electrical equipment (motors, generators, transformers). In addition, the site will expand generator stator winding manufacturing capabilities with the target to deliver double the current annual capacity of generators stator bars.

The announcement was unveiled during a ceremony at GE Vernova’s Fierro Repair Center attended by Arantxa Tapia Otaegi, the Minister of Economic Development, Sustainability and the Environment of the regional Basque Government; and Morgan Terrill, Gas Power Global Supply Chain Development Leader.

Arantxa Tapia Otaegi said: “We welcome GE Vernova’s decision to introduce new generator repair capabilities to the Fierro Repair Center to enable power producers to benefit from better quality, speed, and performance from their assets for years to come. Tapping into the skilled talent base and robust infrastructure in the region, this expansion is testimony to the center’s strengths as a location for advanced manufacturing and repair activities. The center will continue to play an important role in helping to ensure the reliability of GE Vernova’s power generation assets in such a complex and dynamic environment.”

“Due to the rapid growth of generators during the late 90′ and the projected power demands of the future, we predict demand for generator maintenance is going to increase rapidly for the next decade and GE Vernova is committed to support our customers and meet this need”, said Morgan Terrill, driving the Global Supply Chain strategy and development for the global sites. “Consequently, planning ahead is more important than ever, and we decided to make this investment to improve our supply chain capabilities and provide our customers with the ability to repair their generator rather than entirely replace it, benefitting from a viable, more affordable and sustainable approach.”

Fierro Repair Center
GE Vernova has been operating Andoain Service Center since the 1970s. The site originally performed industrial and hydroelectric generator repairs and has evolved to include power generation repairs servicing generators.

The current investment is expected to add a second line for generator stator bar manufacturing and include new equipment to cover the complete process from incoming copper to the finished bar product, including:

  • Stator bar forming equipment, with powered tools and engineered considering ergonomic aspects;
  • Insulation Taping 3D Robot, automated application of insulation tape following parametric CAD design;
  • Hot Press, digitalized and controlled heat treatment process with recording of process parameters.

GE Vernova developed the new stator line layout and material handling using lean methodologies. In three successive lean kaizens, a 10-step process was followed to define standard work to achieve the desired outcome.

“Manufacturing new stator bars requires precise manufacturing processes and high-tech equipment” added Ana Ramoneda, Service Center leader. “We are thrilled the works to inaugurate the second stator bar manufacturing line kicked off, and we look forward to the arrival of the new equipment to perform the quality qualification process before starting production for our customers planned for the end of next year.”

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