While renewable resources’ benefits include the lowest operational costs and fewest greenhouse gas emissions, they can cause potential challenges when integrated into the grid. When the wind blows or the sun shines to produce greater power than demand requires, overcapacity generation must be evacuated at a loss to avoid overloading existing transmission and distribution assets. The changing mix and natural intermittency of these renewable resources also threatens the grid’s ability to meet supply and demand. Incorporating renewable resources without shutting down the whole grid requires a balance between developing renewable energy and system reliability to avoid power outages and disruptions.

Transmission system operators (TSOs), distribution system operators (DSOs), and supply companies are typically mandated to meet minimum-service standards for grid stability and electricity supply. The push to incorporate renewable energy introduces some new challenges, as the grid must adapt to a greater decentralization of energy generation. GE aeroderivative gas turbines can help meet that need.

What is grid firming?

Grid firming—also known as nameplate capacity firming, capacity firming, or renewable firming—is widely used to keep the grid stable in the face of potential wind, solar, and hydro intermittency. To do that, grid operators must also integrate ancillary resources and services.  

For a grid that starts to see renewable sources displacing conventional ones, indicating a high range of renewables penetration, shutdown of some of the fossil fuel plants on which it previously relied is likely. In this case, grid operators can consider other technologies, such as the GE aeroderivative gas turbines or batteries, to balance any deficit while fully integrating with renewable sources. In California, for example, where penetration of solar power is extremely high, grid balancing and firming services are becoming increasingly more valuable.


If gaps arise between a solar energy supply and demand due to clouds or sunset, an ancillary resource like a GE aeroderivative gas turbine fills those gaps and helps maintain grid stability. 

How aeroderivative gas turbines provide grid stability

High renewable penetration grids generally require ancillary services, including frequency and voltage regulation, to maintain stability. The GE aeroderivative gas turbine is an energy solution to balance the intermittency of renewable sources and provide reserve capacity, frequency, and voltage regulation for grids that need help maintaining a reliable and stable operation. Integrating the GE aeroderivatives with renewable source generation improves the power grid’s operational performance by enhancing grid reliability, as well as reducing emissions, fuel consumption, and operational costs.

GE aeroderivative gas turbines’ benefits include:

  The ability to get on the grid quickly and start producing power, in as little as 5 minutes
  High cycling capability, allowing multi-day start/stop cycles without maintenance penalties
  Installation in as few as 11 days
  Flexibility to quickly work within an intermittent grid:
  • Fast ramp rate to get power where it needs to be rapidly
  • High part load efficiency
  • Low minimum load
  • Deeper turndown
  Better frequency regulation due to:
  • Fast ramp rate to address load changes
  • A better transient response than reciprocating engines as multi-shaft machines that can quickly handle drops and rises in loads
  • Higher inertia and power output than reciprocating engines, which improve grid stability and help avoid both brownout and blackout events

Why Gas Power for Integrating Renewables?

How to support global decarbonization targets without losing grid stability? Join our webinar and find out! We will discuss why grid firming is required when there is a high penetration of renewable power and look at global case studies of where thermal hybrids have bridged the gap.

GE’s portfolio of aeroderivative turbines for grid firming

GE offers a variety of aeroderivative gas turbines for grid firming. Learn more about each to determine which turbine is right for you.

LM6000 aeroderivative gas turbine

The LM6000 allows you to operate on a wide variety of fuels—including hydrogen, natural gas, LPG (propane and butane), isopentane, ethanol, diesel, and Coke Oven gas.

This allows you to quickly switch between fuels to save money, all without stopping or a reduction in power. It has a 45-58 MW net power output and up to 41.3% net efficiency. Its start time for a simple cycle is less than 5 minutes, and its ramp rate is 50 MW/minute. The LM6000 offers 99%+ start and operational reliability, alongside 98% availability. Its fast start allows operators to differentiate their dispatch capability, and its dual-fuel capabilities provide fuel flexibility and help customers meet emissions limits.

TM2500 mobile aeroderivative gas turbine

Recommended for mobile power applications available within three months and fast-track or short-term duration projects, the TM2500 50 Hz and 60 Hz solutions have a 33.6 MW average power output and 36.7%  average net efficiency.

Its start time for a simple cycle is fewer than 5 minutes, and its ramp rate is 20MW/minute. The TM2500 is mobile and easy to transport. Its small block size allows good part-power turndown and efficiency. It is relocatable if project requirements change, and it comes with optional clutch-less synchronous condensing.

LM2500 aeroderivative gas turbine

The LM2500 is the most reliable aeroderivative gas turbine in the world, featuring reliability consistently above 99.8%.

Recommended for combined cycle, onshore and offshore power generation, mechanical drive, and cogeneration, the LM2500 power plants feature 21-34 MW simple cycle output, up to 38.5% efficiency and accommodate a wide variety of fuels. It also comes with optional clutch-less synchronous condensing.

LM2500XPRESS aeroderivative gas turbine

Great for helping to meet needs where flexible power is required quickly and efficiently, the LM2500XPRESS 50 Hz and 60 Hz power plants feature a 34 MW simple cycle power output and up to 39% simple cycle efficiency.

Its start time for a simple cycle is fewer than 5 minutes, and its ramp rate is 30 MW/minute. The LM2500XPRESS is a modular and scalable, prefabricated, skid-mounted, pre-commissioned solution with reduced on-site installation and commissioning and a zero gas turbine water consumption requirement.

LMS100 aeroderivative gas turbine

The LMS100 aeroderivative gas turbine is one of the highest-quality simple-cycle efficiency gas turbines in the world.

Its simple cycle output is 117 MW, and its combined cycle output (1x1) is 142 MW. The LMS100 features up to 44.2% net efficiency, 99.6% reliability, and 96.7% availability. Its start time for a simple cycle is less than 8 minutes, and its ramp rate is 30 MW/minute. The LMS100 can provide power at part-load as efficiently as most gas turbines at full load, and can operate with very little power loss, supporting the grid in times of high demand. Its intercooled gas turbine system provides rapid startup, with an 8-minute start to full load and emergency ramp speeds of up to 500 MW/minute, and construction includes a modular “supercore”, which can be exchanged in less than four days to enhance plant availability.


Get the facts around how aeros can support grid firming

Ready to learn more about why our aeroderivative gas turbine solutions are a great peaking plant solution to support the high level of renewable energy generation in Australia’s electricity grid? Download our infographic series, or take a deep dive with our latest white paper.

Customer stories

TM2500 and Channel Island Power Station: supporting hydrogen

Territory Generation selected GE’s TM2500 mobile aeroderivative gas turbine, using its Channel Island Power Station to support grid firming in the Darwin-Katherine region and support hydrogen endeavors.


renewables by 2030


carbon by 2050

Darwin Waterfront at sunset, Australia

"Territory Generation sought technology to modernize our current fleet that struggles to meet changing grid demands and low power system loads. We plan for the TM2500 to be the first of multiple units to be deployed over the next five years as existing units near their end of life. At this stage, the TM2500 generator’s operational flexibility makes it the best fit to firm up the growing renewables base in the Northern Territory."

Gerhard Laubscher

Territory Generation CEO

The LM2500 and Cove Power Station help stabilize Tobago’s grid

GE has inaugurated the first gas turbine for the island nation of Tobago, providing flexible and sustainable electricity to the country’s grid. Cove Power Plant provides the electricity equivalent of more than 28,000 households using the most reliable gas turbine in its class—the LM2500.


Gas turbine on the island

20 MW/28,000

households worth of power distributed to the grid

Beautiful peaceful sunset in Tobago Island

"The island of Tobago is poised for productive growth, and to fuel that growth it made sense to tender for an additional generator. Our GE LM2500 aeroderivative, with its small footprint and high level of reliability was chosen, and we look forward to its performance for years to come."

Courtenay Mark

Chief Technical Officer of the Trinidad and Tobago Electricity Commission

Powering Indonesia’s pearl paradise with grounded jet engines

When pearl farmer Fauzi Se wanted to take advantage of nature’s bounty and expand production of his jewelry business on the Indonesian island of Lombok, he was stymied by a problem only humans can solve—his workshop depended on the grid and didn’t have enough electricity to power his machines. But the country’s geography creates a special set of challenges. You can’t just build big power plants and string wires across the sea.

< 30 days

to COD

10 minutes 

to full power


“Because of the archipelago, you need to have lots of microgrids. That’s where you see the benefits of fast power.”

Matt Patterson


Instead of building a conventional power plant, which can take years, GE Power deployed two fast power units on Lombok, truck-mounted mobile gas turbine generators that were connected to the grid able to start producing more than 25 megawatts each less than a month after delivery. GE’s TM2500 aeroderivative gas turbines are essentially a ground-based version of GE’s popular CF6 jet engine—the same engine that powers many Boeing 747s. Since 2016, GE has installed 14 mobile power plants in Indonesia, which generate 500 MW of power, enough to supply about 4 million homes.

Bringing grid stability to the Bahamas

In early 2020, Bahamas Power & Light Company Ltd. (BPL), the state-owned electric company that provides service to approximately 110,000 customers, installed GE’s TM2500 mobile aeroderivative gas turbine in its Blue Hills plant. The unit supplies up to 34 MW, enough energy to power the residential consumption of between 12,000 and 18,000 customers and may help stabilize the country’s grid.

42 days 

installation and commissioning time

5 minutes 

cold metal to full power


“The highest peak of energy consumption during summer in New Providence is 250 MW and in winter goes down to 160-170 MW. Having an additional of up to 34 MW is significant for our operation and will allow us to deliver a better service to our customers and to the millions of tourists who visit us every year.” 

K. Quincy Parker

Director of Public Relations of BPL

Solar energy has always been a potential renewable power resource for the Bahamas, but its efficiency depends upon connection to a stable grid. Currently, the grid is at its limit and the frequency is not stable, as a result of the 6.6 million tourists that visit the island every year. The gas turbine could help bring that stability.

Working to firm a wind-powered grid

Southern California has become a hotbed for renewable energy projects. To offset the intermittency of Coachella Valley’s 700+ MW of wind power capacity, Competitive Power Venture (CPV) set out to build a natural gas-fired power plant capable of providing efficient and reliable summer peaking and backup power. Unique operating requirements for the plant included: varying capacity, flat efficiency curve, rapid start, and load changes.

At 800 MW, CPV constructed the world’s largest facility utilizing GE’s intercooled LMS100 aeroderivative gas turbine. The turbine was selected for its rapid start (10 minutes) and ramp rate (greater than 10 MW per minute) capabilities. Eight total turbines provide a wide range of dispatch loads—from 50 MW to 800 MW—and a variety of ancillary services, like spinning- and non-spinning reserve, to help stabilize the grid and support intermittent renewable power sources.

103 days 

project completed ahead of schedule


operating hours


"With California's San Onofre nuclear plant off-line and power reserve margins expected to be tight, it is more important than ever that the CPV Sentinel Energy Project be available to support electric reliability this summer. Gemma Power Systems did a fantastic job of working with GE and our team to complete this project ahead of schedule and on budget."

John Murphy

Senior Vice President of Engineering and Construction for CPV

A world's first for GE and Germany

In the northern region of Germany there is an abundance of renewable power available, but there is a lack of power being transmitted to the southern portion of the country. GE provided 11 LM2500XPRESS gas turbines, as well as generators and other equipment, for RWE Generation’s Biblis power plant to increase grid stability throughout the country.


LMXPRESS gas turbines


LM2500XPRESS gas turbines for Germany


"We are delighted that we were awarded the contract for the Biblis site. The excellent existing infrastructure there and our reliable and flexible concept for the plant have won out. We will thus be able to make an important contribution towards security of supply in Southern Hesse. We have a long-standing relationship with GE and we’re proud to work together to install the world’s first LM2500XPRESS."

Roger Miesen

CEO of RWE Generation

Infigen Energy: Helping keep Southern Australia powered

Infigen Energy leases four GE 30 MW TM2500 aeroderivative gas turbines due the their fast-start capability, dual-fuel flexibility, portability, and low maintenance costs. The units complement Infigen Energy’s renewable energy portfolio and add to the grid stability of South Australia.


30 MW TM2500 gas turbines

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