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Vestas (CPH: VWS) Developing Largest Offshore Turbine

Brian Hicks

Written By Brian Hicks

Posted October 5, 2012

Last year, Danish wind company Vestas (CPH: VWS) stated that it was moving ahead with plans to build a massive 7-megawatt offshore wind turbine, featuring 80-meter long blades, weighing in at 800 tons and about 187 meters (613 feet) high. It turns out the turbine will be larger than that, and will provide 8 MW of power.

The V164 platform is designed for the next wave of wind power projects. It may aid in as much as 25 GW of new capacity at the UK’s deep water Round 3, installed by 2020 or so.

The increase in power capacity comes as part of Vestas’ efforts to reduce the cost of energy. It also means these turbines will be at least 2MW larger than comparable offerings from Siemens (NYSE: SI) and General Electric (NYSE: GE), and they will be the largest such turbines on the market.

Business Green reports:

“As we progressed in the technology development it was clear that an 8MW version of the turbine will offer lower cost of energy and at the same time keep the reliability and structural integrity of the turbine unchanged,” said Anders Vedel, Vestas executive vice president and chief technology officer.

A prototype will be tested out in Denmark in 2014, and the company aims to begin producing test blades at the Isle of Wight facility by this year’s end. The hub has already been casted and is at the Isle of Wight for testing. The completed drivetrain will be tested out in Vestas’ Aarhus, Denmark facility sometime early next year.

This development comes soon after Vestas let its former CFO go, after revelations that Henrik Nørremark had signed two agreements in India in 2011 without the knowledge of the board or chief executive Dietlev Engel.

Vestas may incur as much as 18 million euros in losses in consequence. Investigations are ongoing to determine exactly what happened, how much Vestas will in fact lose, and whether it can recover any of the losses.

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