Profile: American Superconductor Corp (AMSC.OQ)
20 May 2013
American Superconductor Corporation (AMSC), incorporated in 1987, is a provider of megawatt-scale solutions. It operates in two business units: Wind and Grid. Wind produces a range of products to increase electrical grid capacity; supplies electrical systems used in wind turbines; sells power electronic products that regulate wind farm voltage to enable their interconnection to the power grid; licenses wind turbine designs to manufacturers of such systems; provides consulting services to the wind industry, and offers products that enhance power for industrial operations. Grid focuses on manufacturing high-temperature (HTS) wire and coils; designs and develops superconductor products, such as power cables, fault limiters and motors, and manages superconductor projects.
Solutions for the wind market
In the wind power market, by designing and engineering wind turbines, providing extensive support services to wind turbine manufacturers and manufacturing and selling critical components for wind turbines. The Company designs and develops entire onshore and offshore wind turbines with power ratings up to 10 megawatts for manufacturers who are in the business of producing wind turbines or who plan to enter the business of manufacturing wind turbines. These customers typically pay the Company licensing fees for wind turbine designs and purchase from the Company the core electrical components or complete electrical control systems needed to operate the wind turbines.
The Company provides extensive customer support services to wind turbine manufacturers. These services range from providing designs for customers’ wind turbine manufacturing plants to establishing and localizing their supply chains and training their employees on proper wind turbine installation and maintenance. It provides electrical control systems or a subset of those systems (core electrical components) to manufacturers of wind turbines designed by the Company. Its electrical control systems regulate voltage, control power flows and maximize wind turbine efficiency, among other functions. As of March 31, 2012, it had shipped enough core electrical components and complete electrical control systems to power more than 10,000 megawatts of wind power.
Solutions for the grid market
In the power grid market, the Company enables electric utilities and renewable energy project developers to connect, transmit and distribute power through its transmission planning services and power electronics and superconductor-based products. The Company provides transmission planning services. These services lead to sales of grid interconnection solutions for wind farms and solar power plants, power quality systems and transmission and distribution cable systems. The power that flows through alternating current (AC) networks comprises both real power, measured in watts, and reactive power, measured in Volt Amp Reactives (VARs). D-VAR systems can provide the reactive power needed to stabilize voltage on the grid. These systems also can be used to connect wind farms and solar power plants to the power grid.
The Company manufactures and provides superconductor wire. This wire can be incorporated into a variety of applications, including motors, generators, fault current limiters and power cables. The Company offers cable systems that are manufactured by third parties and also offer turnkey project management services to electric utilities.
The Company competes with GL Garrad Hassan, Aerodyn, AventisEnergy, Fuhrlander, ABB, Semikron, Vacon, Xantrex, Converteam, Guotong Electric, Ingeteam, Mita-Teknik, Woodward, Gamesa, General Electric, Suzlon, Vestas, Alstrom, AREVA, Mitsubishi Electric, Siemens, S&C Electric, Fujikura, Showa and Sumitomo, Innova, MetOx, Superconductor Technologies, Superpower, SuNAM, Bruker, evico GmbH and Nexans.
American Superconductor Corp
64 Jackson Road
DEVENS MA 01434-4020