The news of the turbine failures arose after China’s National Energy Bureau revealed it was launching an investigation amid fears cost cutting and has caused a fall in standards.
A report in China’s Economic Information Daily, a branch of Xinhua News Agency, referred to the collapse of Sinovel wind turbines in Jiuquan, in China’s northwest Gansu province, and Linghe, in the northeast Liaoning province.
Speaking about the incidents, Sinovel vice-president Tao Gang denied the incidents were down to the quality of the turbine itself.
In Jiuquan, poor installation and extremely strong winds caused the collapse of a Sinovel SL1 1.5MW turbine at the Guazhou wind farm.
In an effort to meet the commissioning deadline on the 134 turbine project, workers failed to fully tighten the bolts attaching the turbine to the tower.
In the Liaoning incident, Tao blamed fire control rather than quality issues. However, he was unable to elaborate any further on how the fires occurred.
More details have also emerged about a turbine collapse at the Datang Zuoyun wind farm in Shanxi province. The manufacturer of the machine is unconfirmed.
An investigation said the flange of the tower was far lower than the international standard in low temperature impact toughness.
In addition, it found the installation company failed to fully fasten the bolts attaching the turbine to the tower.
There are some other cases. For example, on July 14 this year, a turbine in a wind farm 45km to the east of the seat of Xilinguole, Inner Mongolia, was burnt, as shown in the main picture (top). But it was too high for the local fire engines to put out the fire. The manufacturer of the turbine is not known.
On January 24 this year, a wind turbine was burnt at the Baolongshan wind farm of Huaneng, in Tongliao of Inner Mongolia. It is said the incident happened because of inappropriate operation of the wind farm staff worker, which resulted in overheating.
Sinovel chairman Han Junliang said: "An enterprise must supply quality products to clients, and earnestly serve the clients. For example, our staff workers will listen patiently to telephone calls of clients for help, even if it is at midnight. If necessary, our technicians will fly to the site the next morning."