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Capstone Turbine Adds U.S. Coal Bed Methane Market To Its C200 Applications

CHATSWORTH, Calif., Feb. 28, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Capstone Turbine Corporation ( www.capstoneturbine.com ) (Nasdaq:CPST), the world's leading clean technology manufacturer of microturbine energy systems, has added the U.S. coal bed methane market to its portfolio of oil and gas applications with the installation of the country's first methane-fueled C200 at a CONSOL Energy gas processing plant in Pennsylvania.

CONSOL Energy Inc. (NYSE:CNX), a leading diversified-fuel producer in the Eastern United States, estimates the "clean-and-green" 200-kilowatt microturbine will eliminate 6,486 tons of carbon dioxide produced from coal bed methane from the atmosphere each year. Anticipated annual energy cost savings is $80,000. To commemorate the commissioning of this project, CONSOL Energy executives recently donated $7,811 to the local Charleroi Area (PA) school district.

Capstone distributor E-Finity, headquartered in Philadelphia, PA, secured the C200 order, which is installed at CONSOL's Fallowfield Gas Processing Plant in southwestern Pennsylvania. The low-maintenance, highly efficient microturbine produces 200-kilowatts of low-emission power that the plant uses to recover 18.5 million-cubic-feet (524,456-cubic-meters) of methane gas each year and generate 1.3 million net kilowatt hours of clean electrical power.

"The C200 is expected to have much lower maintenance costs and emissions than those from reciprocating engines," said Jim Grech, CONSOL Energy's Chief Commercial Officer.

"As government regulations for methane emissions become stricter, we anticipate more companies will turn to microturbines because they can easily operate on methane gas, produce extremely low emissions, and are exceptionally reliable," said Jim Crouse, Capstone's Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing.

A 2011 U.S. Department of Energy report stated, "Coal bed methane proved reserves and production have grown nearly every year since 1989. Today it accounts for more than 8 percent of total domestic natural gas production and nearly 8 percent of U.S. proved reserves. The U.S. Energy Information Administration believes coal bed methane will continue to hold a similarly important share in the domestic energy picture between now and 2035." http://www.netl.doe.gov/publications/press/2011/121511/CoalBedMet_FC_HRes.pdf

"The flow rate and methane concentration of the waste gas stream are well suited to the capacity of Capstone's C200," said Deborah Kosmack, CONSOL Energy research engineer. "The microturbine is rated to operate at 33 percent electrical efficiency, based on a lower heating value." 

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