The manufacturer of wind turbines to reduce their costs in the coming years significantly. This applies to all components of the large windmills., The foundation, the tower, the machine housing and the rotor blades
The US-based General Electric, therefore, has a new tower developed. “It is significantly cheaper than a comparable concrete hybrid tower,” said Andreas von Bobart, Germany-Chief of the wind division, the Handelsblatt in Hamburg. The cost savings is moving “in the low double-digit percentage range.”
How it works, he shows in a video. As in a metal building kit for children individual sections of the tower are assembled from steel elements on the future site. Each of these final elements are then piled one by one from a crane on each other. In the end, the entire tower is covered with a PVC sheath.
With the new technology will Bobart of leading the division since May last year, mainly reduce the logistics costs. For the metal parts fit on normal trucks. “We need, among other things, no special load transport lengths for the tower,” Bobart justified the decision for the new technology. Such heavy vehicles must be approved separately. In addition, they often have to take long detours because they can not pass through many streets. And locally less building site is required for the metal tower.
“We can so the number of abnormal loads reduce by half in a wind turbine, by some,” said of Bobart. Because instead of big tower elements only other bulky parts such as the engine housing and long rotor blades must in future be associated with special transporters for future location.
But the industry also working to solve these logistical problems working. For example, produces Germany’s largest manufacturer of wind turbines Enercon from northern Germany Aurich its rotor blades recently in two parts. Thus, for the more than 60-meter blades easily transported by road to the site.
GE’s decision to test a new tower technology, but also very practical reasons. “Concrete towers are currently the bottleneck in the construction of new wind turbines”, Bobart said. Because in this market there are only a few suppliers.
However, until now only a test tower in the United States with a height of 85 meters. The next year, GE wants to build a 139 meter high tower in Germany with lattice mast. For these are the heights, which are now required for plants at sites with low winds.
the end of next year, wants the group that is number five in the wind power industry worldwide, according to the Danish consulting company Navigant, for the new towers begin commercial sale.