micro-turbine Line Power Units (LPUs)December 12, 1999 by Jeff Shepard
SatCon Technology Corp. (Cambridge, MA) recently introduced its new line of standard micro-turbine Line Power Units (LPUs) from its Power Electronics Products Division in Maryland. According to SatCon, the product couples with a micro-turbine to provide on-site power generation using natural gas and is a complimentary product to the power electronics products which SatCon sells to fuel cell manufacturers. The LPU is designed to convert high-frequency ac power from the micro-turbine to 60 cycle residential or commercial power. The LPU is also designed to start the micro-turbine, regulate the output and condition the power. The units have been tested in 60Hz applications in the US and 50Hz applications in Europe. According to the company, the LPU will be manufactured at Magmotor (Worcester, MA), a subsidiary of SatCon. The units will be sold through the Ling Electronics (Anaheim, CA), also a subsidiary of SatCon, and Magmotor international sales and distribution channels and serviced through Ling's international service network. The LPU is one of the few products that can interface directly with the utility grid in either an on or off the grid operation, said David Eisenhaure, president and CEO. And systems that can operate remotely or interface with the utility grid have significant advantages over systems that can only operate off the grid. In addition, systems that can work with fuel cells, micro-turbines or photovoltaics have a stronger competitive advantage over systems that are application specific. They also can be used in alternative fuel vehicles, and the Power Electronics Products Division has a version sized for automotive use.