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Wärtsilä acquisition of Greensmith Energy is latest indicator of trend towards hybridisation

This week,  Wärtsilä announced the acquisition of Greensmith Energy, the US-based system integrator and software company which specialises in developing grid-scale energy storage solutions. This move marks the latest milestone for Wärtsilä as they continue to diversify into hybrid power solutions (and microgrids), including the integration of solar PV and energy storage alongside their traditional engine-based power generation offerings. The acquisition is expected to be completed in July 2017.

In April last year, Wärtsilä announced that it would enter the solar energy business by offering utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) solutions. The new solutions included solar PV power plants of 10 MWe and above, and hybrid power plants comprising solar PV installations and internal combustion engines. Both solutions are offered with full engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) capability. Wärtsilä has previously set a target of delivering 200 MWe of solar installations by 2018. It’s not clear whether this target will be revised following the acquisition. What is clear, however, is that Wärtsilä is serious about hybrids and moving outside their comfort zone of manufacturing and selling engines.

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