Wellhead Power Solutions Receives Patent on Hybrid Energy System

The patent is for integrating gas turbines with battery power systems that enable electrical-generating stations to provide advanced grid stability.

OCTOBER 12, 2017 - 2017 Wellhead Power Solutions, LLC, a leader in Hybrid electrical generating systems, has been granted U.S. Patent No. 9,722,426 on a Hybrid Energy System and Method. The patent, which was issued on August, 01, 2017, covers the Company’s innovative Hybrid Control System for integrating gas turbines with battery power systems that enable electrical generating stations to provide advanced grid stability, while meeting peak power demands and minimizing GHG emissions.

The technology referenced in Wellhead’s Hybrid Energy System patent was recently deployed by the General Electric Company as part of the Hybrid Electric Gas Turbine (“EGT®”) retrofit of Southern California Edison Company’s LM6000 peakers at the Center and Grapeland substations. The projects were completed in April and have enabled each facility to supply up to 49 megawatts of contingency reserves along with high-speed regulation and frequency response to California’s electrical system.

Wellhead performed the EGT® installation services for the projects and also upgraded the SCR units at the SCE facilities.

General Electric’s LM6000 Hybrid EGT® is governed by Wellhead’s patented Hybrid Control System (“HCS”). The HCS integrates a 10MW battery with a facility’s gas turbine to produce a blended high-performance energy output with precise net energy output control over the full range of the gas turbine while managing both the battery’s state of charge and the starting, ramping and stopping of the gas turbine.

The specific LM6000 EGT® Hybrid control system for SCE was co-developed by Wellhead Power Solutions and General Electric based on the WPS Hybrid patent pursuant to a joint development and commercialization agreement. According to Grant McDaniel, leader of the Wellhead development team, “For the Hybrid functionality to be fully effective, the system had to ensure that the unit was responsive to grid signals with or without fuel burn by the gas turbine. Complex programming was required to allow for bi-directional sequencing, adaptive synchronization, precision megawatt output control, advanced emissions controls and modified fuel shut-off /purge system of the gas turbine. The integrated control approach of the HCS now allows SCE’s LM6000 Hybrid EGT’s® at Center and Grapeland to provide superior support to the California grid while the facility is synchronized to the system at zero energy output and zero GHG emissions, with no minimum up time or down time requirement for the gas turbine.”

“Receiving a patent on the Hybrid Control System technology validates our leadership in developing advanced solutions to the challenges faced by electric utilities integrating renewable energy resources into the grid,” said Hal Dittmer, President of Wellhead Power Solutions. “We are looking forward to pursuing related patents in countries around the world where enhanced gas turbine generators will be added to improve the reliability of the electrical grid while minimizing GHG emissions.”

About Wellhead Power Solutions, LLC

Wellhead Power Solutions, LLC is the technology affiliate of the Wellhead Electric Company, Inc. Wellhead Electric is an independent power producer with over 30 years of experience inside and outside of California as a developer, owner, operator and constructor of both conventional and renewable energy projects. Based in Sacramento, Wellhead has 60 employees and over 400 megawatts of generating assets that it owns and operates. Wellhead began developing and experimenting with Hybrid control system concepts on its own LM6000 units beginning in 2010. The development effort was prompted by a dramatic increase in variable operation of its peaker fleet for grid reliability reasons (versus peak energy) as variable renewable generation increased in California. Wellhead has made a commitment to power plant and electric industry technology development and currently has four additional advanced technologies in the pipeline.

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