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From "Illuminating" Southwest China to Serving the World
Updated:2022.08.29

On August 2, the 72-hour trial run for No.7 hydro-generator unit of Crane Beach Hydropower Station in the downstream section of Jinsha River was completed and the unit was officially put into commercial operation. Among the hydro-generator units of Crane Beach Hydropower Station that have been put into operation, it is the 10th one with a capacity of one million kilowatts. It marks that the total installed capacity of the units put into operation at Crane Beach Hydropower Station has reached 10 million kilowatts. 

This is the world's largest hydropower project under construction, as well as the most challenging one in all aspects, representing the highest standard of hydropower station construction around the globe. A total of 16 hydro-generator units with a capacity of one million kilowatts have been installed in the hydropower station, with the largest single-unit capacity in the world. Among them, units 1-8 on the left bank are "made in Sichuan". 

All hydro-generator units with a capacity of one million kilowatts bring in the cumulative output of more than 600 million kilowatts in Sichuan. In China, Sichuan contributes 60% of nuclear power products, 50% of large power station castings and forgings, 40% of hydro-generator units, 30% of thermal power generator units and turbines, 16% of wind power equipment, and 7.8% of crystalline silicon photovoltaic cell components and photovoltaic power station equipment. 

Developing from nothing and growing stronger gradually, Sichuan has switched its role from "illuminating" Southwest China to serving the world. The more-than-half-a-century headway makes Sichuan one of the most technologically advanced research & development (R&D) and manufacturing bases with the most complete clean energy equipment industry system. 

Actuality: Being Equipped with the Whole Industrial Chain 

Sichuan is the most massive clean energy base in China. How is the word "most" embodied? 

"One striking feature is that multiple energy fields develop and expand on a large scale." An official from the Sichuan Provincial Economic and Information Department said that Sichuan is equipped with the whole-chain capability of designing, producing, testing, verifying, maintaining, and operating advanced power generation equipment, including that of hydropower, clean thermal power, high-end nuclear power, gas, and solar power, as well as high-power wind-driven generators. These years, the power generation equipment output in Sichuan has topped the list in the world. The province's annual output value of the energy equipment industry (including the crystalline silicon photovoltaic industry) exceeded 300 billion yuan, accounting for about one fifth of the industry in China. The domestic market share of 15 products in Sichuan remains the first. Besides, the world's largest solar silicon production base has been built, and the solar cell production capacity ranks first in China. 

While the scale is expanding, many local equipment enterprises, together with R&D institutions, inherit the gene of independent innovation and step up efforts to lead or co-lead the country in relevant fields on the basis of long-term catching up with others. Over 80 high-end innovation platforms such as State Key Laboratory of Long-life High Temperature Materials and National Engineering Research Center for Gas Turbine and Coal Gasification Combined Cycle have been established in Sichuan. In the past three years or so, Chengdu-Deyang High-end Energy Equipment Industry Cluster alone overcame difficulties in developing more than 400 key core technologies, nearly 70 of which reached the standards for international cutting-edge technologies. That greatly strengthened the ultra-large and high-precision extreme manufacturing capability. 

The relevant head from Sichuan Provincial Economic and Information Department also provided an endless list numbering achievements made in Sichuan. For example, such products as the hydro-generator units with a capacity of one million kilowatts, the largest single-unit capacity in the world, blazed a trail in the field of hydropower equipment around the globe. The development of "Hualong-1" has filled in the blanks of multiple nuclear power technologies in China, and new breakthroughs have been made in the fourth-generation nuclear reactor technology. In addition, the first domestic F-class 50MW heavy-duty gas turbine and the 13MW direct-drive offshore wind turbine with the largest single-unit capacity in Asia have become world-renowned in the world. 

Moreover, there is a dynamic development network taking place in the clean energy equipment field in Sichuan, in which large enterprises undertake a Herculean task, small and medium enterprises spring up while a group of specialized, sophisticated, distinctive, and innovative enterprises dash to the market. "Dongfang Electric Corporation, Sinomach Heavy Equipment Group Co., Ltd., TW Solar, and other leading enterprises, have a place in the country and even the world," the relevant head added. Half of the top ten leading enterprises in the field of crystalline silicon photovoltaic have settled in Sichuan for further development. There are 766 industrial enterprises above the designated size and 381 high-tech enterprises included in Chengdu-Deyang High-end Energy Equipment Industry Cluster, which collectively raised the cluster's R&D spending of GDP to 3.2%. Moreover, there are over 3,300 energy equipment enterprises and supporting enterprises in Sichuan, with extremely strong embeddedness and supporting capabilities. 

In the global market, Sichuan has supplied energy equipment products and services to more than 100 countries and regions, with the cumulative trade value of over 40 billion yuan. After a large group of quality hydropower equipment went global, "Hualong-1" nuclear power equipment made in Sichuan made its way to the international market. Power generation equipment for hydrogen, energy storage, and solar power embraces bright market prospects. 

"Sichuan has long been committed to the construction of clean energy bases, providing scenarios and conditions for high-end equipment R&D and application. Meanwhile, it continuously creates a good ecosystem for industrial development." According to the relevant head from Sichuan Provincial Economic and Information Department, Sichuan has gathered a large number of competitive enterprises and service institutions in the fields of energy investment, exploration and design, R&D consulting, engineering construction, and operation services. 

Prospect: With World-class Advanced Manufacturing Clusters as the Target 

Seizing the opportunities of the national "carbon peaking and carbon neutrality" goals and a new global energy revolution, Sichuan sets the tone for quality development of the clean energy equipment industry and aims at developing a world-class advanced manufacturing cluster. 

"We will focus on four areas for the next step. The first is to expand the industrial scale of the cluster facing the world." The relevant head added that an action plan to build the world-class clean energy equipment industry cluster in Sichuan will be formulated and implemented. Taking this session of the World Conference on Clean Energy Equipment as an opportunity, we will drive industrial agglomeration through conventions and exhibitions, step up efforts to attract investment into the industrial chain, and promote the gathering of advantageous innovation resources and industrial resources in the field of global clean energy equipment in Sichuan. We will strive to double the scale of the cluster and lead the world in terms of the cluster's development level in about five years. 

"We will also encourage energy equipment enterprises to deepen cooperation with other advantageous enterprises so that they can adopt the mode of 'investment + engineering + equipment + services' in order to jointly develop global solar energy, wind energy, hydro energy, and other resources. It can not only accelerate the development of energy equipment, but also steadily increase its share in the international market," said the relevant head from Sichuan Provincial Economic and Information Department. 

The second focus is to accelerate the cultivation of world-class enterprises. The Mount Everest Climbing Plan will be implemented in Sichuan to accelerate the building of world-class enterprises with outstanding products and brands, leading innovation, and modern governance in the fields of hydropower, nuclear power, wind power and photovoltaic power generation. At the same time, the "Minya Konka Excellence Training" action plan will be carried out in a bid to cultivate a number of specialized, sophisticated, distinctive, and innovative "little giant" enterprises and "single champion" enterprises in the fields of hydrogen energy, energy storage, geothermal equipment, as well as other segments with development potential. Besides, we will promote the integrated development of small, medium and large enterprises. 

"The third focus is to consolidate and expand the leading technological advantages." The relevant head said that more support will be provided for the establishment of a number of innovation carriers such as provincial-level cutting-edge extreme manufacturing technology innovation centers, advanced hydropower equipment innovation consortia, and clean energy equipment industry innovation centers. Efforts will be made to create a national clean energy equipment manufacturing innovation center in Sichuan. Relying on leading enterprises and research institutions, we will strive for breakthroughs in key core technologies in hydropower, nuclear power, hydrogen energy, and other fields at a faster pace. As we improve the supply capacity of industrial technology sources and global leading capacity, we will accelerate the advancement of industrial foundations so as to play a pioneering role in scientific and technological innovation in the field of clean energy. 

"In addition, clean energy equipment should be green and intelligently manufactured to achieve low carbon or even zero carbon in the whole life cycle." The relevant head of Sichuan Provincial Economic and Information Department introduced that Sichuan will proactively play a benchmarking and leading role in guiding energy equipment enterprises to use more new energy and renewable energy, as well as promoting low-carbon energy consumption. The province encourages the development of integrated solution services, supply chain management services, customized services, product life cycle management, and other businesses. Moreover, Sichuan will improve the recycling mechanism and promote the circular development of the clean energy equipment industry.

 
 
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