U.P. firm lighting the way overseas

IRON MOUNTAIN – Equipment designed and manufactured locally by Systems Control of Iron Mountain is now helping keep the lights on for people living in the countries of Libya and Columbia.

A division of Northern Star Industries Inc., System Control has entered the international market in a substantial way – by sending four skids to Libya and one to Columbia.

The skids are part of a mobile back-up power plant and can be installed and operational at the final destination in a few weeks rather than the usual 6-9 months.

According to Al Bloniarz, executive vice president of Systems Control, General Electric uses its TM2500 engines as the main turbine generator package, which is capable of generating up to 30 megawatts of power.

Systems Control is working with General Electric to design and manufacture the 8-foot-by-40-foot skids, which weigh 32,000 pounds each.

The skids are designed and manufactured at Systems Control, loaded on a semi truck at the Iron Mountain facility and transported to another location, and finally put on an air cargo transport plane to be flown to their overseas destination.

The demand for the skids has come during a time when utility companies have been looking for smaller, more flexible ways to supply electricity rather than building big power plants.

In Libya, with the help of Systems Control, General Electricity Company of Libya installed the mobile backup power plants from GE in a few weeks.

This type of application is being used in regions that are starting developing, but can also be used when there is a need for power after disasters.

GE provided the four mobile gas turbines with 104 megawatts of backup power to meet the electricity demand during the hot summer months in Libya and Columbia.