General Electric said Thursday it won a $1.4 billion contract to build giant wind turbines for Oregon's Shepherds Flat generating station, expected to tip the scales as the largest in the U.S. with a generating capacity of 845 megawatts.
General Electric (GE 15.70, +0.04, +0.26%) will supply 338 turbines to be installed in 2011 and 2012 for Shepherds Flat, which will carry a total price tag of about $2 billion.
Spanning 30 square miles of Gilliam and Morrow Counties in north-central Oregon, near the town of Arlington, the Shepherd Flat project will operate under three 20-year power purchase agreements between the wind farm owner, Caithness Energy, and Southern California Edison, a unit of Edison International (EIX 35.38, +0.41, +1.18%) . GE will also own a stake in the wind farm, but its specific share of the project wasn't disclosed.
Shepherds Flat will generate enough electricity for more than 230,000 households with its 845 megawatts, beating out the current front runner in wind farm: the Roscoe Wind Complex Project in Texas, built by E.On Climate & Renewables, with a generating capacity of 782 megawatts, according to rankings from the American Wind Energy Association.
To put those generating figures in perspective, a typical nuclear power plant generates about 1,000 megawatts....MORE
Of course the nukes produce at better than 90% of nameplate capacity versus ~30% (depending on location) for wind.