GE assists Cyprus with energy shortage issues

Mari, Cyprus, July 31, 2012 — When four GE 6FA gas turbines at the Vasilikos Power Station on Cyprus were knocked out of service last July by a huge explosion at a nearby naval station, a GE service team began performing repairs and supplying parts within days of the disaster.

As a result, two of the site's four gas turbines resumed service in June, less than a year after the accident. GE expects to have the remaining units back in operation before the end of the year.

The power station, owned by the Electricity Authority of Cyprus, represents more than 50 percent of the power capacity installed on Cyprus. The rapid rehabilitation effort was critical for island residents, helping the country regain its power autonomy and limit the costs associated with the use of temporary generator sets. The power shortage caused economic losses for both small and large businesses and also had a impact on the hotel industry and tourism-related businesses, which are critical to the Cypriot economy.

The July 11, 2011, explosion occurred at Evangelos Florakis Naval Base, and the explosion wave from the blast hit the power plant, knocking out local power supplies and causing a country-wide energy shortage. The explosion also damaged properties in nearby villages. Estimated total damage to the Cyprus economy was more than €3 billion.

In total, more than 200 GE repair engineers and other technicians contributed to the rehabilitation effort over the past year and helped repair or replace more than 10 major turbine components.

The Vasilikos Power Station is EAC's newest and largest power plant. The four GE gas turbines produce 440 MW in combined-cycle operation, or about 52 percent of the plant's total installed capacity of 850 MW. The gas turbines being repaired were supplied by GE in 2008 and installed in 2011, with all of the units under GE contractual service agreements.

In addition to the units for the Vasilikos plant, GE has supplied EAC with five Frame 6B gas turbines at other sites in the country. GE technology provides 40 percent of Cyprus' total installed power capacity.

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