Six months after the offshore union between Areva and Gamesa, Adwen continues to market the two 5MW offshore models, as well as its more recently developed 8MW AD 8-180, started at Areva.
Kavafyan pointed to the value of the AD 5-135 model and the experience that has already been gained through its installations — 600MW is operating in the German North Sea, and the model is to be installed at the 350MW Wikinger project in the Baltic Sea.
The AD 5-132 model, which originated at Gamesa, has a lighter nacelle mass, which may benefit some foundations, or floating models, he said. "In Asia, the possibility of considering the 132-metre rotor platform is a real option. But, today, in Europe we only manufacture the 135-metre model for the Wikinger project."
The trend for larger wind turbines is very strong and very fast, he said. This is based on cutting levelised cost of energy, as the larger models reduce infrastructure costs and bring a better yield. "The decision for an investor is an easy choice," he said.
But he is not ready to concede that the 5MW offshore models have had their day, pointing again to the importance of the learning from the installed 5MW turbines. "These units will run for the next 25 years. This 5MW platform is the core of our offshore experience today."
"When you experience offshore conditions on the rotor size of of 135 metre you really want to capitalise on that experience and grow step by step. Eight megawatt is the trend — it will become a reality. We believe that experience matters and 5MW is a very strong step we will use towards the 8MW platform," Kavafyan concluded.