Estonian consortium targets 10MW-plus turbine

ESTONIA: Technology firm AS Eleon is working with a consortium of companies and universities to develop a 10MW onshore and offshore wind turbine.

Eleon's 3MW prototype turbine on Saaremaa, west Estonia
Eleon's 3MW prototype turbine on Saaremaa, west Estonia

The group comprises the Finnish universities of Aalto and Tampere and Germany's Rostock University, German firms Windnovation Engineering Solutions, Windrad Engineering and PE Concepts, plus Estonian companies Eleon, Civitta Eesti and Meta Advisory Group.

The consortium has applied to the European Commission's Horizon 2020 research and development programme for support.

The Mammout 10+MW turbine project will cost roughly €38 million over a four-year programme in 2018-2022, Eleon said.

The project is based on Eleon's patent for a single-side direct-drive (SSDD) wind turbine concept. Eleon has a 3MW prototype of the turbine installed on the island of Saaremaa, an island west of Estonia's mainland.

"[The prototype] has proved itself technologically and created a basis of trust, which is demonstrated also by the strong network of international partners that wish to take part in this project," said Oleg Soenajalg, co-founder of Eleon.

"The SSDD technology provides a significant reduction in wind turbine head mass, main component weight and dimensions compared to all other technologies. This allows construction of wind turbines without extra heavy components, special sized cranes or heavy load transportation, lowering price costs, handling cost and installation costs," Soenajalg added.

The largest capacity turbine currently available on the market is MHI Vestas' 9.5MW V164 offshore wind turbine.

It is known offshore wind rivals Siemens Gamesa and Senvion are also planning to release 10MW-plus turbines in the near future, and with the constant evolution of the V164, MHI Vestas is likely to follow suit.

There is also reason to believe GE Renewable Energy could be working on something beyond 10MW, following its takeover of LM Wind Power and the subsequent investigation by the EC.

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