Siemens says it has expanded its direct-drive wind turbine technology with the addition of the SWT-8.0-154 turbine, representing a significant step toward grid parity for offshore wind. According to Siemens, the 8 MW turbine is based on the existing offshore direct-drive platform, incorporating only smaller evolutions.
The company says that the first SWT-8.0-154 will be installed in early 2017 and will allow for up to 10% higher annual energy production (AEP) under offshore wind conditions as compared with the 7 MW model.
Further, the offshore direct-drive platform enables a significant reduction in the levelized cost of energy at low risk. The company expects to obtain type certification for the 8 MW turbine at the beginning of 2018.
In addition, Siemens has announced that its high-performance wind turbine for medium- to low-wind conditions – the SWT-3.3-130 – has obtained type certification from DNV GL. The machine is rated at 3.3 MW and equipped with a 130-meter-diameter rotor.
Siemens says that as part of the certification process, DNV GL experts were given full access to the engineering design details, Siemens assembly facilities and the SWT-3.3-130 prototype installed at the test site in Høvsøre, Denmark. Evaluation included assessment of the maturity of the turbine design; its manufacturing, installation and commissioning processes; and the related documentation, according to the company.
Siemens says that the upgrade of the offshore direct-drive wind turbine to 8 MW is made possible through the introduction of new magnet technology with an even higher grade than that introduced in the SWT-7.0-154. This enables a rated power increase of more than 14%, from 7.0 MW to 8.0 MW.
Similar to the previous upgrade from 6.0 MW to 7.0 MW, the 8 MW turbine will benefit from the established supply chain and proven components of offshore direct-drive technology, including the B75 blade and the medium-voltage transformer of the SWT-8.0-154.
“We are relentlessly working on lowering the levelized cost of energy, and the offshore direct-drive platform enables us to do this with the lowest possible risk,” says Michael Hannibal, CEO for offshore at Siemens’ wind power and renewables division. “With the same proven reliability as our successful 6 and 7 MW models, the SWT-8.0-154 will be the new benchmark for gearless offshore wind technology on the market.”