2003 Global Energy Award Cites Company's SuperVAR(TM) Synchronous Condenser
As Compelling New Solution For Ensuring Reliable Electricity Service
WESTBOROUGH, Mass., Dec. 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- American Superconductor Corporation (Nasdaq: AMSC), a leading electricity solutions company, today announced that its SuperVAR(TM) synchronous condenser has been named this year's "Most Promising Pre-commercial Technology" at the 5th Annual Platts Global Energy Awards ceremony, which was held on Friday evening, December 12th in New York City. The Global Energy Awards are presented by Platts and sponsored by BusinessWeek. Both Platts and BusinessWeek are divisions of The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE: MHP).
"The 2003 blackouts in North America and Europe have made transmission grid stability everyone's concern," said Greg Yurek, chief executive of American Superconductor. "Since we shipped the first SuperVAR machine to the Tennessee Valley Authority in November of this year, we have seen significant interest from independent system operators and utilities in using SuperVAR synchronous condensers as a robust new solution to help prevent blackouts by dynamically stabilizing grid voltage. The product of our extensive engineering and transmission system expertise, SuperVAR synchronous condensers use high temperature superconductor technology to transform a twentieth century transmission device into a 21st-century solution with the potential to ensure the world more reliable electricity service."
Grid Stability, Reactive Power and SuperVAR Synchronous Condensers
As the demand for power increases and more electricity is transmitted over the grid, power lines become stressed, which can result in voltage instability and ultimately, power outages. The key to preventing major outages, protecting service quality and maximizing transmission capacity is ensuring that grid voltage is properly regulated(1). Utilities keep voltage levels stable and ensure a reliable flow of electricity by maintaining a balance of real power (Watts) and reactive power (VARs) on their transmission grids(2). A recent letter issued by the North American Electricity Reliability Council (NERC) based on an analysis of the August 2003 blackout cited the need to ensure appropriate levels of reactive power as the highest priority for transmission owners and operators.
SuperVAR synchronous condensers serve as reactive power "shock absorbers" for the grid, dynamically generating or absorbing reactive power (VARs), depending on the voltage level of the transmission system. SuperVAR machines also respond instantly to protect grids and electricity customers against sudden voltage fluctuations (known in the power industry as "voltage transients"), which can be caused by lightning storms, short circuits caused by tree branches momentarily touching lines, animals contacting transmission elements, and other sources. AMSC's SuperVAR machines and D-VAR(R) systems instantly stabilize voltage and provide utilities new, cost-effective means to actively increase the reliability and maximize the capacity of transmission grids. For more information about AMSC's SuperVAR synchronous condensers, please see http://www.amsuper.com/html/products/motorsGenerators/quickVAR.html.
first SuperVAR(TM) synchronous condenser was delivered in November
2003 to the Tennessee Valley Authority.
About Platts Global Energy Awards
From a broad list of nominees, finalists are selected in each category based on their ability to meet the criteria for each award. Each year, an international panel of judges composed of the energy industry's elite, including top corporate executives, leading academics, respected commentators, senior analysts and knowledgeable editors, convene in London to cast their votes. Preeminent in their fields, these individuals are able to evaluate each entry within its category and also within the context of the energy industry as a whole. Now in its 5th year, the Platts Global Energy Awards has become the most prestigious awards program in the industry.
Platts is the global leader in providing energy information. For nearly a century, the energy industry has looked to Platts as the most reliable source of independent industry news and price benchmarks. From 14 offices worldwide, Platts covers the oil, natural gas, electricity, nuclear power, coal, petrochemical and metals markets. Additional information on Platts real-time news and price assessment services, publications, databases, geospatial tools, conferences, research and consulting services and energy financial services is available at www.platts.com.
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About American Superconductor Corporation (Nasdaq: AMSC)
AMSC is a world-leading supplier of dynamic reactive power grid stabilization products and the world's principal vendor of high temperature superconductor (HTS) wire and large rotating superconductor machinery. AMSC's power electronic converters and HTS wire are at the core of a broad range of new electricity transmission and distribution, transportation, medical and industrial processing applications, including dynamic reactive power grid stabilization solutions, large ship propulsion motors and generators, smart, controllable, superconductor power cables and advanced defense systems. The company's products are supported by hundreds of patents and licenses covering technologies fundamental to Revolutionizing the Way the World Uses Electricity(TM). More information is available at www.amsuper.com.
American Superconductor, SuperVAR and Revolutionizing the Way the World Uses Electricity are trademarks and D-VAR is a registered trademark of American Superconductor Corporation. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
Any statements in this release about future expectations, plans and prospects for the Company, 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: uncertainties regarding the Company's ability to obtain anticipated funding from corporate and government contracts, to successfully develop, manufacture and market commercial products, and to secure anticipated orders; the risk that a robust market may not develop for the Company's products; 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. 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 most recent quarterly or annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. In addition, the forward-looking statements included in this press release represent the Company's views as of the date of this release. While the Company anticipates that subsequent events and developments may cause the Company's views to change, the Company specifically disclaims any obligation to update these forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing the Company's views as of any date subsequent to the date this press release is issued.
- Voltage is the "pressure" that drives electrical current through power lines.
- Reactive power, which is measured in VARs (volt-ampere-reactive), is the component of electricity that maintains the proper level of voltage in transmission lines to drive "real power," which is measured in Watts, through the power lines to customers.
SOURCE American Superconductor Corporation -0- 12/15/2003
/CONTACT: Adam Banker of AMSC +1-508-621-4375, firstname.lastname@example.org; or
Investor Contact: Mary Ryan, +1-508-621-4432, email@example.com, both of
American Superconductor Corporation/
/Web site: http://www.amsuper.com