General Electric is showcasing its power and propulsion capabilities at the MADEX International Marine Industrial Defense Exhibition in Busan, Korea, this week, targeting the KDDX destroyer and CVX aircraft carrier programmes of the Republic of Korea (RoK) Navy.
“GE is the only company in the world that offers a full spectrum of gas turbine and electric drive propulsion solutions, including mechanical drive, hybrid electric drive or integrated full electric propulsion. Together, GE Aviation Marine and GE Power Conversion have provided naval power and propulsion systems for 41 navies onboard 755 ships,” explains Kris Shepherd, VP/General Manager, GE Aviation Marine. “To date, GE has supplied the ROK Navy with 155 marine gas turbines for 91 ships. Our longstanding in-country partner, Hanwha Aerospace, co-manufactures the engine components for the RoK’s naval and industrial gas turbines and assembles, tests, and provides service support [for] GE naval engines in-country.”
For the 6,000t KDDX, GE has proven solutions for both propulsion configurations under consideration: integrated full electric propulsion (IFEP) or hybrid electric drive (HED). The IFEP solution would be nearly identical to the UK’s Type 45 destroyer and would leverage other successful electric ship systems designed for QUEEN ELIZABETH-class carrier and the USN ZUMWALT-class destroyer. The HED system would use the 3.4MW shock-tested motor designed for Britain’s Type 26 frigate and the Global Combat Ship programmes in Australia and Canada. Both propulsion systems would use dual GE gas turbines to meet commonality, reliability, survivability and efficiency goals.
“GE has the world’s leading, proven solutions for both IFEP and HED systems, which are available now to support the KDDX program. We believe that there are noteworthy benefits with an IFEP solution, since it can easily accommodate energy demand growth for future weapons and radar systems,” comments Andy Cooper, UK Managing Director of GE Power Conversion. “Powered through GE’s flexible electric grid on the ship, IFEP provides other advantages, including greater operational and mission flexibility, and better energy management and energy efficiency.”
The company’s IFEP solution uses fourth-generation advanced induction motors, shock-proof drives, and a GE generator - coupled to a reliable GE LM-series gas turbine - to provide a low-risk, fully compliant solution. The KDDX IFEP solution, using GE’s advanced electric ship architecture and electrical system integration expertise, is a natural first step as the RoK Navy progresses to a scaled-up IFEP system on the larger CVX aircraft carrier.