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Turbines of the year: Onshore Turbines up to 2.9MW

WORLDWIDE: The volume end of the wind-power market, where competition over price and specification is at its most intense

Gamesa G126-2.5MW… Low-wind model aimed at a variety of markets
Gamesa G126-2.5MW… Low-wind model aimed at a variety of markets

MEDAL WINNERS

GOLD Gamesa G126-2.5MW

The expected continued growth and increasing importance of low-wind regions — in developed as well as emerging markets — ensures growing demand for dedicated IEC III turbines.

The low-wind Gamesa G126-2.5MW with its large 126-metre rotor diameter offering only 201W/m2 specific power-rating fits well into various geographical wind-market categories.

The company reports positive market feedback "even before market introduction, and with thousands of megawatts in the final closing stage".

The prototype was installed earlier this year, following its launch at China Wind Power 2015.

The G126-2.5MW represents the latest model expansion (and perhaps) completion of Gamesa’s successful 2–2.5MW platform, which dates back to 2002 with the initial 2MW turbine with an 80-metre rotor diameter and 398W/m2.

Gamesa’s first 2.5MW turbine model featured a 114-metre rotor diameter and was aimed at IEC IIA sites. The longer blade of the new G126 is an in-house development. Key to market acceptance is retaining drivetrain modularity characteristics between the 2.0MW and 2.5MW series.

It should be noted that Gamesa develops and manufactures part of its demand for gearboxes and generators in-house. Similar to the proven drivetrain solution for the 2MW models and the G114-2.5MW, the G126-2.5MW features a main shaft supported in two bearings, a three-stage gearbox and DFIG.

SILVER Vestas V110-2.0MW

The V110-2.0MW is the latest 2MW platform extension for low-wind sites (210W/m2). It has quickly become a highly competitive volume product, including its prestigious selection for the Mid-American 2GW Wind XI project.

The 2.2MW power optimised model increases annual energy production (AEP) by up to around 3%, according to Vestas.

The platform’s history goes back to 2000 and the V80-2.0MW model. Technically, these and all other 2MW model variants feature a classic non-integrated high-speed Vestas drivetrain layout.

Characteristic to this proven non-integrated drivetrain solution is a main shaft supported in two main bearings, which is attached to a three-stage gearbox, while a separate intermediate shaft connects it to the generator.

BRONZE GE 2.0-116

GE’s 2MW 2.0-116 turbine model for low-wind sites offers a low specific power rating of 189 W/m2. This model evolution of the 2–2.4MW platform was GE’s biggest seller in 2015, but the range is characterised by a highly flexible choice in power-rating and rotor diameter combinations.

The pitch-controlled variable speed 2.0-116 and other intermediate model variants feature a high-speed drivetrain with three-point gearbox support and DFIG. Remarkably, the main design principles are to a large degree still based upon the technology of the 1.5MW Tacke turbine introduced in 1996.

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