Big wind blades: Still getting bigger

Gamesa launches a new turbine, LM Wind Power installs and operates its new 73.5m blade.

Related Topics:

Wind turbine manufacturer Gamesa (Zamudio, Vizcaya, Spain) has launched a new wind turbine, the G114-2.0 MW Class IIIA, designed to optimize energy generation from low-wind sites. The turbine can be purchased with any of five different rotors (80m, 87m, 90m, 97m and 114m, or 262 ft, 285 ft, 295 ft, 318 ft and 374 ft in diameter) and various tower heights. This flexibility is said to make the turbine ideal for any type of site, with availability levels exceeding 98 percent. The unit’s 2.0 MW capacity and its maximum rotor diameter of 114m/374 ft, with a swept area of 10,207m2/109,867 ft2, can increase the turbine’s annual energy output by 20 percent over its predecessor, Gamesa’s G97-2.0 MW turbine. Its blades each span 55.5m/182 ft and have aerodynamic features, reportedly developed using state-of-the-art technologies, that maximize the blades’ wind capture yet reduce their noise output levels.

Gamesa’s target markets include India, Brazil, China (high-consumption provinces near Beijing and Shanghai) and low-wind sites in Europe and the U.S. The company says it will begin manufacturing prototypes of the G114-2.0 MW in the third quarter of 2013, and turbines will hit the market by the end of the same year.

Also in the news, LM Wind Power (Kolding, Denmark) says that on March 19 its new 73.5m/241-ft long blades became the first blades larger than 70m/230 ft to be installed when power provider Alstom (Levallois-Perret Cedex, France) inaugurated the largest offshore wind turbine in the world at Carnet (see photo), in the Loire-Atlantique region of France. The composite blades were developed specifically for Alstom’s Haliade 150-6MW wind turbine as a result of a collaboration between the two companies to boost energy capture while keeping turbine loads down. The blade’s design had already been through several rounds of testing before the first three commercial blades were installed on the turbine in France.