And you thought the REpower turbines now operating at the Ormonde offshore wind complex off northwest England, said to be the largest anywhere with their 60-plus meter blades (matched by an Enercon turbine, it now appears), were mind-bogglingly big. Think again, turbine geek. That’s the fun size, compared to what Vestas is cooking up.
The Danish wind power company is building a demo offshore turbine that has 80-meter blades and is capable of putting out 7 megawatts of power. It’s being made for the energy provider DONG Energy, and the plan is to install it in the waters off Frederikshavn, Denmark, in 2013.
How stupid big is this turbine? As Vestas depicts it, it’s as long as nine London double-decker buses. And the root of the blade – where it connects with the rotor hub – is big enough that you could drive one of those buses into it. Another way to talk about turbine size is “swept area” – the area the rotating blades cover. The Vestas turbine checks in there at 21,124 square meters, dwarfing Enercon’s E126 at 12,668 square meters, and REpower’s M5 at 12,469.
Building a turbine of such extreme dimensions just makes economic sense, the companies said. “New and more efficient turbines are a crucial part of the efforts to reduce the construction costs for offshore wind farms,” Anders Eldrup, CEO of DONG Energy, said in a statement.
DONG has regulatory clearance to install a total of six demo turbines at the site where the V164-7.0 is bound. The companies didn’t say what sort of other turbines might go there, but DONG is planning to invest 32 million Euros ($43 million) at the site.