Project Development, Wind Power

5 MW Wind Turbines Headed Onshore and Off

One year ago this week, the world’s only 5 MW wind turbine began spinning. So far, the data look good, according to REpower, and plans are underway for more deployments.

The success of a year’s worth of operation of the prototype REpower 5M wind turbine in Brunsbuettel is documented with an average availability of 95.1 percent. Measured and certified performance values since operation have exceeded those calculated by the company during the development phase. Despite extensive surveying, inspections and numerous visitors from commerce, politics and science (together with safety-related shutdowns), the prototype, with a tower height 120 meters to the hub, rotor diameter at 126 meters, rated power at 5,000 kW, has supplied around 13 million kilowatt hours (kWh) to the public grid to date. Further steps planned for this year include two 5Ms to be constructed for E.ON/Essent and the Lower Saxony energy supplier EWE at the DEWI OCC test site in Cuxhaven, where it will be possible to test offshore deployment under favorable wind conditions and obtain comparative data. In the summer, the 5M is likely going offshore: Two turbines will be assembled at a depth of 44 meters, 25 kilometers from the Scottish coast in the Moray Firth. For REpower, this demonstrator project marks an important milestone in the development of the offshore market and the future competitiveness of wind energy in general, the release claims.