Goldwind signs converter deal with Infineon

CHINA: Goldwind has signed an agreement with German components manufacturer Infineon Technologies AG to import the company's core module production technology.

Under the agreement, Infineon Technologies AG, a semiconductor supplier, will authorise Goldwind to produce modules for MW-level wind turbine converters.

The deal comes as Goldwind is finishing the construction of its electronic control plant in the Beijing Economic and Technological Development Zone. The Infineon licensed modules will be produced at the new facility.

They will be used in Goldwind 1.5MW and 2.5MW turbines as well as its upcoming 3MW turbines.

Goldwind chairman Wu Gang said the company plans to improve its ability to independently manufacture core components.

In China, most wind turbine producers simply buy components and assemble them into turbines. A few turbine makers have their own technologies, but most others buy blueprints from foreign companies.

Wu said converters, core components of wind turbines, constitute about 15% of the costs in turbine production. Imported module technology amounts to about 50% of the cost of actually making the converters.

So far, Chinese companies do not produce module production technologies for wind turbines. Importing them creates an increase in costs and adds time to delivery.

According to senior executives of Beijing Techwin Electric Company, a subsidiary of Goldwind for convertor production, a convertor is produced at a cost of about CNY800,000 ($120,000). With localised production, Goldwind may be able to lower the cost by around 10%.

Arun Mittal, head of the industrial and multimarket unit of Infineon Technologies AG, said Infineon has not put any time and quota limits in the Goldwind deal.