GE opens new $40-million Grid IQ Global Innovation Centre
By Anthony Capkun
October 2, 2012 – GE today announced the opening of its newly constructed Grid IQ Global Innovation Centre in Markham, Ont. The 200,000-sf facility is designed to foster innovation and global collaboration to improve the efficiency, reliability and security of the world’s electrical grids. The $40-million project is supported by a grant of $7.9 million from the Government of Ontario.
“Markham is a great place for GE to locate this new facility,” said Juan Macias, general manager, Grid Automation. “We are investing in innovation, and this new facility demonstrates our commitment to ongoing research and development in substation and distribution automation, as well as electrical grid protection and control. As the global centre of excellence for grid automation, we will be collaborating on innovative solutions with customers, partners and academics around the world.”
The facility includes 100,000 sf of production space and will help GE meet both current and future product demands. To support that growth, the facility also incorporates onsite research, test and simulation laboratories. The building includes a technical training centre providing both on-site and distance learning offerings for GE employees, partners and customers.
“Companies like GE are taking bold steps to make the smart grid a reality and enhance reliability of our energy system,” said Chris Bentley, Ontario’s minister of energy.
One of the most innovative areas of the facility is the Grid IQ Customer Experience Centre and application showcase, which allows customers to take an interactive, immersive look at GE’s full suite of energy management tools on a 60-ft video wall.
“The opening of the Grid IQ Innovation Centre in Markham is our third centre for innovation in Canada this year,” said Elyse Allan, president and CEO, GE Canada. “Executing and commercializing innovation is essential to driving economic growth and productivity. We appreciate the support and leadership from the Province of Ontario to make today’s opening a reality.”