Caption: Colorado Bend Generating Station in Wharton, TX.
Exelon Generation (NYSE: EXC) this week broke ground on construction of a new low-carbon, combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) at its Colorado Bend Generating Station in Wharton, TX. Exelon was joined by senior executives from Alstom, General Electric (NYSE: GE), and Zachry to commemorate the undertaking.
The new CCGT will provide an additional 1,000-MW to the existing 498-MW natural gas-fired power plant and be one of the most environmentally friendly and efficient CCGTs in the nation. It will use General Electric's most advanced gas turbine technology and an air cooling system, eliminating the use of water to cool the unit.
Construction of the new unit is a part of Exelon Generation's ongoing growth strategy and will allow the company to offer more low-carbon electricity to the growing Texas market. The new unit at Colorado Bend is one of two new CCGTs the company is developing in Texas. The other 1,000-MW CCGT will be constructed at Exelon's existing Wolf Hollow Generating Station in Granbury, Texas, which is approximately 35 miles outside of Ft. Worth. Both units are expected to achieve commercial operation in 2017.
"Exelon is a forward-looking company, and what we see is a clean-energy future that includes this kind of new technology, which uses little water and produces few emissions while generating electricity at a very low cost," said Ken Cornew, president and CEO, Exelon Generation. "We're delighted to be the first to employ this GE technology, and we're delighted to do it in Texas. This is how Exelon sees the energy future of America – clean, affordable, and efficient."