The world’s most powerful wind turbine
MHI Vestas has further established its position as a major player in the offshore wind market by introducing its most powerful wind turbine generator along with the completion of a new assembly building for turbine structures and a large investment in a turbine gearbox testing facility.
The new powerful turbine is rated at 9.5MW which is a significant step up from existing turbines and is based on established technology.
This new 9.5MW unit is based on the proven technology of the company’s V164 platform which up till now has been the platform for their 8MW turbine that is in wide use and their more recent 9MW unit. The upgrading to 9.5MW has meant redesigning the gearbox to handle the extra power and upgrading the cooling system in addition to the significant increase in the capacity of the generator unit itself. The nacelle housing the generator is 20 metres long by 8 metres by 8 metres and weighs in at 390 tonnes.
The turbine is powered by blades that are 80 metres in length with each one weighing 39 tonnes. The hub height is 105 metres and the tip height is 187 metres. With this increase in capacity MHI Vestas claims that the overall cost of generating power will come down because fewer turbines will be needed for a given power output which in turn will reduce installation and maintenance costs.
Jens Tommerup, the CEO of MHI Vestas, said, “As a leader in the offshore wind industry, we are committed to lowering the cost of energy through innovative turbine technology. The launch of our V164-9.5 MW turbine is a testament to that leadership and to the ingenuity of our engineers and technicians. The V164-9.5 MW is built on the industry-leading V164 platform, the most powerful platform in operation. Just one single turbine is now capable of powering more than 8,300 UK homes.”
MHI Vestas Offshore Wind is a joint venture between Vestas Wind Systems A/S 50% and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) 50%. The company’s sole focus is to design, manufacture, install and service wind turbines for the offshore wind industry. To meet increased demand the company has recently opened an assembly plant for the V 164 modules in Esbjerg where they already have a major turbine assembly facility.
In another development the company has announced a cooperation deal with Clemson University in the US to establish a development and testing facility for the gearboxes and bearings for the 9.5 kW turbine. This $35 million investment will help to cement the company’s position in the US wind industry which is likely to be a major user of this powerful turbine.
By Dag Pike
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