The first two 2.5MW machines are scheduled to be erected in the second half of 2010. In March, the German company was anticipating installation in the first half of this year. The company had originally expected the first two 2.5MW prototypes to be erected last year.
"It's a market problem; the technology is fine," says PowerWind spokesman Christoph Broesamle. Before the economic crisis it was a sellers' market. Waiting times for turbines were long and so some customers were willing to shoulder extra risk and buy a prototype. However, turbines can now be ordered and delivered more swiftly, and buying a prototype has become less attractive.
"In 2009, a potential customer decided in the end against the 2.5MW prototype in favour of a tried-and-tested model," Broesamle says.
PowerWind is optimistic about progress. In 2012, it expects to install more than a dozen 2.5MW machines, all using rotor diameter of 100 metres, compared with the 90 metres planned for the two prototypes.
Meanwhile, PowerWind has signed up Finnish company Moventas as a second gearbox supplier, alongside Jahnel-Kestermann, for its 900kW turbine type. This model has been in production since January 2008 at PowerWind's factory in Bremerhaven. More than 100 have so far been sold in Europe, Azerbaijan and the US. In 2011, the company expects to install close to 100 turbines.