Tower maker buys rights to two lines -- Pfleiderer shifts to turbine production

German construction company Pfleiderer is moving toward the wind turbine manufacturing business, with a particular focus on the offshore market. It has acquired all patents, licences and brand name rights for the "Multibrid" technology developed by German Aerodyn Engineering. Multibrid has been developed exclusively for use offshore (Windpower Monthly, September 1998). Pfleiderer has long been involved in the German wind business as a manufacturer of concrete towers for wind turbines.

Construction and installation of a 5 MW pilot wind turbine for tests and further development is expected to happen by 2002, followed by installation of a prototype. The company hopes to begin serial production of its 5 MW offshore machines in 2004. Talks are already underway with developers and potential offshore wind station operators, according to the company.

Contracts for the pilot project have been granted to Aerodyn for the overall engineering, and to Schorch Elektrische Maschinen und Anlagen, a subsidiary of Elexis of Frankfurt, for development and production of the generators, with an option for serial production. Aerodyn and Schorch financed and produced the feasibility study for the Multibrid technology, Pfleiderer notes.

Pfleiderer's Multibrid acquisition follows its purchase in the summer of Austrian turbine manufacturer Windtec -- not to be confused with Wintec of the US. Windtec, founded by wind veteran Gerald Hehenberger, is a developer of variable speed turbines with models rated between 600 kW and 1.5 MW in capacity, designed for low wind speed sites. Windtec's 1.5 MW prototype was installed this year at Germany's Grevenbroich wind test station (Windpower Monthly, July 1999). Pfleiderer says that it will concentrate on "the international market" for its onshore wind sector.

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