The direct drive prototype has been installed to allow Siemens to test the upgraded components in its new turbine.
The 7MW turbine is broadly similar to the 6MW model. This means most of the design is already verified, including the 154-metre diameter rotor. Siemens said it expects the turbine to enter serial production by 2017 as testing should take less time. DNV GL has been contracted to carry out type certification of the turbine.
Siemens unveiled the 7MW at the EWEA Offshore 2015 event in Copenhagen in March. The manufacturer said the 7MW turbine has stronger permanent magnets in the generator and improved converter units, allowing its capacity to be increased from 6MW.
Speaking about the 7MW machine at EWEA Offshore Siemens Offshore CEO Michael Hannibal described it as "the same generator, we've just put in some other magnets".
Also in March, the 7MW was named as the preferred turbine for the second phase of Dong Energy's 660MW Walney Extension project in the Irish Sea.
The manufacturer has a tradition of slowly uprating its turbines. The 3.2MW and 4MW were originally 3MW and 3.6MW respectively.