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Gas Engines

G.E. Jenbacher BIOGAS Project in MEXICO

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 GE Power & Water Products


The GE Power & Water Jenbacher gas engine business is one of the only companies focusing exclusively on gas engine technology. The patented combustion systems, engine controls and ancillary systems are all designed to enable the power plant to meet low NOx levels and provide high efficiency and reliability in a wide range of applications and fuels


The following provides an overview of some of the alternative fuels as well as some of the Jenbacher applications.

Fuel Applications

  •     Natural Gas
  •     Pyrolysis Gas
  •     Sewage Gas
  •     Landfill Gas
  •     Coal Mine Gas
  •     Biogas
  •     Flare Gas


System Applications

  •     Decentralized Energy Supply
  •     Cogeneration
  •     Trigeneration
  •     Steam / Drying for Process
  •     Cogeneration
  •     Trigeneration
  •     Steam / Drying for Process

Natural Gas

Natural gas utilization in reciprocating gas engines offers numerous advantages:

Lowest emissions of all fossil fuels

The utilization of natural gas in gas engines is characterized by the lowest C02 emission levels among fossil fuels, and particularly low emissions of S02, NOx and particulate matter.

Most important fossil energy source

Natural gas plays a major role in energy supply today and will become the most significant fossil energy medium in the next 50 years.

Well developed natural gas supply infrastructure

The natural gas supply infrastructure is well developed and reliable. Gas engines are therefore an optimal technology for decentralized energy supply.


Pyrolysis Gas

Gases from gasification processes.

The production of special gases through various gasification processes is becoming increasingly important for the utilization of alternative energy sources. Various base materials (e.g. residential and commercial waste, light shredder fractions, bulk waste, wood, meat and bone meal, old tires) are subjected to high-temperature gasification processes, such as fixed bed, fluidized bed, or pyrolytic gasification. The resultant gases require a highly sophisticated gas engine since their composition usually changes very rapidly. Depending on the gasification process, the combustible components mainly consist of hydrogen, carbon monoxide, and methane, having a calorific value in the range from 145 to 340 BTU/Ft3. Sophisticated gas treatment, rapid reaction to changing calorific values, accurate monitoring of the combustion process in the engine, and effective system coordination between the engine and gasifier, are only some of the complex requirements for gas engines using pyrolysis gas.

Sewage Gas

Sewage sludge is created as a waste product in the mechanical, biological or chemical cleaning stage of sewage treatment plants. The sludge is dried and then transferred to a digester where an anaerobic fermentation process takes place. The fermentation produces biogas – also called sewage gas – consisting of 60-70% methane and 30 – 40% carbon dioxide. This composition makes sewage gas highly suitable for combustion in gas engines. The electrical energy produced by the gas engine can be utilized for the treatment plant as well as for feeding into the public power grid. The thermal energy from the gas engine can be used for heating the sewage sludge or other heat load requirements of the treatment plant.


Landfill Gas

Landfill gas is created during the decompression of organic substances in the waste and consists of methane (CH4), carbon dioxide(C02), and nitrogen (N2). If this gas escapes uncontrolled, it hampers the recultivation of the landfill site. To prevent this and to avoid offensive smells, smoldering fires, or the migration of landfill gas into the aquafer system, the gas must be continuously extracted under controlled conditions. With a calorific value of approximately 485 Btu/Ft3, landfill gas consitutes a high-value fuel for gas engines and can therefore be economically utilized for power generation.


Coal Mine Gas

Coal mine gas is a problematic phenomenon associated with pit coal mining, as the gas can form explosive mixtures together with air. The main component of coal mine gas is methane (25-60%), which develops during the geochemical conversion of organic substances into coal. Coal mine gas is present both as liberated gas in fissures, faults and pores, and as adsorbed gas on the inner surface of the coal and neighboring rock. Combustion of coal mine gas in gas engines is practical as an environmental and safety problem is effectively resolved, while economically utilizing an otherwise wasted source of energy.



The biogas and special gases segment is comprised of plants that generate energy from landfills, agriculture, coal mining, chemical plants, and other industries. The environmentally-appropriate disposal of problem gases is the primary concern in this segment. The utilization of these gases for generating power ensures the economic viability of the power plants. The continuous development of the Jenbacher gas engines and the focus on special gas applications has made the GE Energy Jenbacher engines one of the world leaders in this segment today.


Flare Gas

Flare gas is an associated gas obtained during crude oil exploration, largely consisting of methane and higher hydrocarbons. This composition results in a gas with low knocking resistance, which requires specially designed engines. The use of flare gas, which is generally available free of charge as a waste product, ensures a fuel source for power generation and, if required, the engines can also provide a source of heat for surrounding facilities. Consequently this problem gas can be eliminated, while being economically and practically utilized.


Decentralized Energy Supply

Numerous advantages with Jenbacher systems.

Jenbacher generator sets and cogeneration systems are well suited to fulfill any decentralized energy supply needs. Some of the key features of the Jenbacher system are:

  • High electrical efficiencies of up to 43%
  • Overall efficiencies (electrical and thermal) of over 90%
  • Minimum emissions through the patented LEANOX® lean     mixture combustion technology
  • Specially designed engines for utilization of CO2-neutral alternative energy sources (e.g., biogas or landfill gas) and special gases (e.g., coal mine gas or coke gas)
  • Maximum operational safety and availability
  • High power density

Through supply of distributed power, it is also possible to reduce or avoid altogether electric transmission and distribution losses.



Maximum overall efficiencies

With combined power and heat generation (cogeneration) the waste heat generated during engine operation is deliberately and economically utilized, resulting in overall efficiencies of more than 90%. This efficient form of energy conversion is able to achieve primary energy savings of approximately 40% using gas engine cogeneration systems, compared with generating the power and heat separately. In addition, investment costs for gas engines, relative to competing technologies, are low.

Power and heat utilization

The power generated is utilized to cover the consumption of the individual facilities (e.g., hospitals) and/or fed into the public power grid. The thermal energy can be used for both generating hot water and steam production, as well as for various forms of process heat. Gas engine cogeneration systems are also used for trigeneration systems (combined generation of heat, cooling and power).

Generation of hot water

Cogeneration systems capture excess heat from the engine. The heat can be used to generate hot water, which can then be utilized by local or district heating systems to cover their basic heat requirements. Peak heat demand can be covered through the use of a buffer system and a peak boiler plant. Due to varying heat demands during the year, multi-engine-installations are the preferred solution for district heating systems.



The combination of gas engines with absorption chillers is an optimal solution for generating air conditioning and/or refrigeration. The waste heat from the intercooler, the engine oil, the engine cooling water, and the exhaust gas serve as energy for the chillers. Combining a cogeneration plant unit with an absorption refrigeration system allows utilization of seasonal excess heat for cooling. Using trigeneration, it is possible to achieve overall efficiencies (power and air conditioning and/or refrigeration) of up to 75%, increasing both annual capacity and overall plant efficiency.


Steam / Drying for Process

Roughly 50% of the thermal energy generated in a gas engine consists of exhaust gas heat with a temperature of approximately 750ºF to 930ºF which can be utilized for the production of steam. The remaining waste heat contained in the engine cooling water, oil, or air/fuel gas mixture, can be utilized for feed water preheating. Applications include processed steam for industrial operations, hospitals to meet their requirement for sterilization steam, and food processing operations. The exhaust gas from the gas engines can also be utilized directly or indirectly for drying processes (e.g., in brick works, ceramic industry, animal feed drying). Overall efficiencies of more than 98% can be achieved through the recovery of the heat discharged from the cogeneration plant by way of heat exchangers and the exhaust and radiation heat.



Wide performance range in four engine types.

To optimally cover the requirements of various customer power needs and applications, the Jenbacher gas engine product range is divided into four types, and eight engine sizes from 335 kW to 3,000 kW electrical output.

Type 2

    Electrical output of 335 kW
    Available as in-line 8 cylinder engine
    1,800 rpm (60 Hz)
    Available in 20-foot or 40-foot ISO container

    Available as in-line 8 cylinder engine

    1,800 rpm (60 Hz)

    Available in 20-foot or 40-foot ISO container

Type 3

    Electrical output from 500 to 1,100 kW
    Available as V12, V16 and V20 cylinder engine
    1,800 rpm (60 Hz)
    Available in 40-foot ISO container

    Available as V12, V16 and V20 cylinder engine

    1,800 rpm (60 Hz)

    Available in 40-foot ISO container

Type 4

    Electrical output from 1,100 to 1,500 kW
    Available as V20 cylinder engine
    1,800 rpm (60 Hz)
    Containerized version available

    Available as V20 cylinder engine

    1,800 rpm (60 Hz)

    Containerized version available

Type 6

    Electrical output from 1,500 to 3,000 kW
    Available as V12, V16 and V20 cylinder engine
    With 1,500 rpm (6O Hz with gear-box)

    Available as V12, V16 and V20 cylinder engine

    With 1,500 rpm (6O Hz with gear-box)

Three key features across all four engine types:


    Top efficiencies
    High performance density
    Long service intervals
    Low life-cycle costs

    High performance density

    Long service intervals

    Low life-cycle costs


    Established, field-tested designs
    Optimized, robust engine components
    Stationary engine concept

    Optimized, robust engine components

    Stationary engine concept


    Maximum operational safety and availability through optimized individual components

    High degree of maturity

    Proven control and monitoring concept

    Continuous and focused development of future products



DIA.NE® XT – Dialog Network

Optimum control

DIA.NE® XT is the latest Jenbacher engine management system, and is designed for use with all Jenbacher engines. The system comprises powerful central industrial controls that handle master control and feedback control for the engine-plant, as well as visualization. A link, via standardized industry buses or using direct signal lines, with central process control is provided to meet the specific requirements of each customer.

The focus of the DIA.NE® XT design lies in combining powerful and flexible open- and closed-loop control electronics with a user-friendly operating concept. The novel hardware design employs the most modern components and sets new standards for performance, functionality and operating safety. The visual display uses a color graphics display screen, providing a clear and comprehensible presentation of information and measured values while offering the greatest possible ease of use.

With additional components it is possible to adapt DIA.NE® XT individually to meet various customer requirements.


Monitoring Ignition Control: On-line monitoring system of the ignition voltage that allows preventive maintenance of spark plugs and ignition coils.


Data remote transmission: HERMES offers the operator remote diagnostics and solutions at any time via internet, modem or LAN connection.

HERMES provides the following two applications, which can be used separately or together:


Dialog Network for Windows Systems: Delivers full remote operation of Jenbacher engines as well as comprehensive functions for analysis and trend identification in the familiar Windows environment.


Dialog Network for Remote Message Control: Automated data and message transmission to a remote data transmission center and auto-alarm by way of fax, SMS and/or e-mail. All incoming messages and data are archived for maximum traceability of operations.


Maintenance & Service

Our commitment to our customer goes beyond simply offering the best products and solutions in the market. We are committed to the long term satisfaction of our customers and offer a skilled team of service professionals and five (5) warehouse facilities for the provisioning of parts.

Smith Power Products can also offer:

Custom Preventative and Corrective maintenance contracts.

The support of the Smith Power Products and the Jenbacher Houston and Milwaukee parts warehouses, North American field technicians organizations as well as the worldwide network of field technicians. The Jenbacher Training Center which offers customer-specific hands-on training courses for operators.

The Jenbacher in-house Competence Center which utilizes remote diagnosis and remote servicing by means of HERMES.

Free Energy Analysis upon request

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