Windy

General Electric's monster wind turbine could set it up for the Green Rush

Tuesday, January 5, 2021 by Robinhood Snacks | Disclosures

You could light up a town... Tell that to your significant other, or to General Electric's ginormous wind turbine, which could (literally) light a small town on its own.

  • Haliade-X: Sounds like a Zenon: Z3 spinoff, actually a monster wind turbine in the Netherlands. GE's testing it for a new series of giant offshore turbines.
  • 853 feet: How tall this thing is — the turning diameter is longer than two football fields. It's the largest wind turbine ever built. GE's planning to make more and stick them in oceans.

Started from the microwave... Now we here. For most of its 128-year history, GE was an exemplary giant of American business. It was the longest-standing member of the exclusive Dow index – until it got booted in 2018. GE stock has plunged ~75% over the past 10 years (largely why it got booted). But...

  • Haliade-X could bring greener pastures for old-school GE. Wind turbines have the potential to replace the pollution-spewing plants that power our cities (read: future-friendly).
  • Competitive advantage: Larger turbines produce more electricity, but also reduce the cost of building and maintaining wind farms.
  • That makes Haliade-X attractive to wind farm developers, who are competing for contracts to supply countries with wind energy at the lowest price.
THE TAKEAWAY

We’re at the start of a Green Rush... for clean energy. More than 110 countries have pledged carbon neutrality by 2050, and big corporations like Amazon have pledged to go carbon neutral by 2040 — Microsoft is aiming for carbon-negative by 2030. All these governments and companies will need clean energy to achieve their green goals. GE is still pretty new to the offshore wind game. But if it can succeed in the (big) challenge of manufacturing and installing its turbines at scale, it could rise yet again.