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American Superconductor and GE Receive First SMES Order; Entergy to Utilize D-SMES to Assure Power Reliability.

Business/Technology Editors

WESTBOROUGH, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sept. 20, 2000

American Superconductor Corporation (Nasdaq: AMSC) and GE Industrial Systems, a business of General Electric Company (NYSE: GE) announced today that they have received their first order for a D-SMES system. American Superconductor and GE formed a strategic alliance in April 2000 to market and sell D-SMES (Distributed Superconducting Magnetic Energy Storage) systems as a co-branded product offering to U.S. utilities to improve power grid reliability.

The team's first D-SMES sale was to Entergy Corporation, which has headquarters in New Orleans and ranks among the largest U.S. utilities ( The D-SMES system will be deployed in an Entergy power grid in Texas in early 2001.

"We analyzed many different solutions to meet our load growth and improve reliability in the region," said Sharma Kolluri, Supervisor, Technical Studies Group, Technical System Planning - Transmission. "The D-SMES system offered by GE and American Superconductor clearly was the lowest-cost, most effective and quickest solution available to meet our needs."

Entergy is evaluating additional D-SMES units in the near term to meet its needs for increasing reliability and enhancing power flows through its growing power delivery system. Entergy operates a system composed of 15,500 miles of high voltage transmission lines and 1,450 transmission substations. Entergy's Transmission Business is recognized by the marketplace for reliability of power delivery.

"Entergy has once again demonstrated its leadership in bringing leading-edge solutions to meet the needs of its customers," said Greg Yurek, American Superconductor's chief executive officer. "We are impressed with their thoroughness and aggressiveness in seeking to provide immediate solutions for today's challenges, and to create an even more reliable power delivery system for the future."

"This sale shows the role that D-SMES plays in augmenting the range of solutions that GE offers to meet the demands for increased reliability and quality of power," said Steve Smith, General Manager of GE's Transmission, Distribution and Industrial System Business, a part of Industrial Systems.

To learn more about the American Superconductor/GE co-branded D-SMES power reliability solution, see cap_reactcompen.shtml or

Technical Background

Superconducting Magnetic Energy Storage or SMES, is American Superconductor's patented means of storing large quantities of electricity in a superconducting electromagnetic coil until needed as an electric power supplement. Combined with proprietary power electronic devices known as inverters, the SMES storage unit becomes an active device for instantaneously solving power reliability and quality problems at the transmission grid level or at individual industrial or data center sites.

Severe weather, traffic accidents and unforeseen equipment failures can lead to momentary sags in the voltage on power lines. In the United States, over 80% of all electric power disturbances are voltage sags that last less than one second. According to industry data, these momentary voltage sags cost manufacturers and digital power users tens of billions of dollars annually in damaged equipment and lost productivity. SMES systems have been in use for several years at industrial sites in the U.S., South Africa and Europe to provide premium-quality power for individual customers that are vulnerable to momentary drops in voltage in the power delivery network.

SMES components are housed in a semi-tractor trailer and attached to transformers at utility substations at strategic locations within a power grid (D-SMES configuration) or installed as an interface between a utility power supply and an industrial or commercial power user to improve power quality (PQ-SMES configuration). When a voltage drop is detected by the unit's power electronics, SMES instantaneously injects precise amounts of both real and reactive power into the system it is protecting, thereby keeping voltage levels stable. SMES provides a low maintenance, cost effective and flexible solution for utilities, Internet data centers and process intensive industrial users to dramatically improve transmission level reliability and facility power quality.

American Superconductor

American Superconductor Corporation, headquartered in Westborough, Mass., was founded in 1987 and is a world leader in developing and manufacturing products utilizing superconducting materials and power electronic devices for electric power applications. The company's products, and products sold by electrical equipment manufacturers that incorporate its products, can dramatically increase the capacity and reliability of power delivery networks, significantly reduce the manufacturing costs of electrical equipment such as motors and generators, lower electrical operating costs and conserve resources that are used to produce electric power. For more information, please visit us at

GE Industrial Systems

GE Industrial Systems is a global leader in manufacturing products used to distribute, protect and control electrical power and equipment, and supplying product and service solutions for commercial, industrial, residential and utility applications. GE Industrial Systems is one of GE's major businesses. GE is the world's largest diversified technology, manufacturing and services company with a commitment to achieving worldwide leadership. For further information, visit the company at

Certain statements in this release, including statements containing the words "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "expects," "will" and similar expressions, constitute forward looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. There are a number of important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements. Such factors include the uncertainties that : the company will be able to obtain the anticipated funding from corporate and government contracts; the company will be able to successfully develop and manufacture commercial products; a robust market will develop for the company's products; and the company will secure anticipated orders. Additionally such factors include: the risk that strategic alliances and other contracts may be terminated; the risk that certain technologies utilized by the company will infringe intellectual property rights of others; the competition encountered by the company, including several large Japanese companies; the amount and timing of the company's future cash requirements and the availability of satisfactory financing sources. Reference is made to these and other factors discussed in the "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operation" section of the company's periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission .
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Publication:Business Wire
Geographic Code:1U1MA
Date:Sep 20, 2000
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