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American Superconductor Licenses Wind Turbine Technology to Model Enerji in Turkey

American Superconductor Corporation, a leading energy technologies company, announced today that it has licensed its proprietary WT1650 wind turbine design to Model Enerji Ltd., Turkey’s first megawatt-class wind turbine manufacturer. Under the terms of the contract, Model Enerji has exclusive rights to manufacture, sell, install, operate and maintain the WT1650 in Turkey and has non-exclusive rights for surrounding Mediterranean and Eastern European countries.

Model Enerji, based in Istanbul, plans to manufacture the 1.65 megawatt (MW) turbines, which utilize a doubly-fed induction generator drive train, in Turkey’s Ankara industrial zone. The company plans to have its first prototype installed and commissioned in mid-2009 and begin producing the turbines by the end of 2009. Subject to achieving certain volume production levels with the WT1650, Model Enerji also has a right of first refusal to license a proprietary 2 or 2.5 MW wind turbine design from AMSC Windtec that will utilize a full-conversion permanent magnet generator drive train.

“Because of its vast wind resources, open terrain and industrial infrastructure, Turkey is predicted to be among the world’s fastest growing wind energy markets,” said M. Celal Keki, General Manager of Model Enerji. “Our highly experienced management team has extensive expertise in Turkey’s energy industry. Utilizing AMSC Windtec’s designs and expertise, our company will be the first wind turbine manufacturer in Turkey and is ideally positioned to capitalize on this advancing market.”

Model Enerji was recently founded by a team of veterans of Turkey’s energy sector. The company works in collaboration with two key Turkish partners: Pars Makina Ltd., a developer and manufacturer of turbo and rotary heat engines; and SNC Kalite Ltd., an expert in quality assurance systems and integrated logistic systems.

In addition to an upfront license fee, AMSC will receive a royalty payment for the first 425 WT1650 wind turbines manufactured by Model Enerji. AMSC also has a right of first refusal to provide the electrical systems needed for all of the wind turbines manufactured by Model Enerji.

“Turkey has one of the fastest growing economies in the world and, like all growing economies, it needs more sources of power generation to enable its continued strong growth,” said Greg Yurek, AMSC founder and chief executive officer. “With the country’s electricity demand expected to rise seven to eight percent annually in the coming years, the Turkish government is increasingly promoting wind power to bolster the security of the country’s power supply, gain additional energy independence and reduce emissions. Model Enerji has a first-mover advantage in this dynamic market and has the technical expertise, strong management and experienced partners needed to achieve long-term success.”

In its Global Wind 2007 Report, the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) predicts Turkey could be the next “giant market on Europe’s doorstep.” The country’s wind power capacity grew 198 percent to 146 MW in 2007. An additional 12 licensed projects with a capacity of over 600 MW are expected to be finalized by the end of 2009. The Turkish Energy Market Regulatory Agency is expected to offer licenses for up to 10,000 MW of wind energy in the years ahead and says 30,000 MW would eventually be feasible.

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