Spain

Spain

On research priorities

Impressed and surprised by the announcements of offshore wind projects using large scale machines, especially when the European Union is financing projects to study the "feasibility" of large machines (e.g. EURE project, EU's Joule programme). Requests sources of information to confirm the technical and commercial viability of large wind turbines?

From José I. Ibarra, IBERDROLA, S.A.

Madrid, Spain.

I have been impressed and surprised by the announcements of offshore wind projects using large scale machines. In particular I refer to PowerGen's plans for 37.5 MW offshore in the UK; and a project in Westfalia in Germany for eight 1 MW machines, supported, among others, by electric utility RWE.

I am surprised because the European Union is financing projects to study the "feasibility" of large machines when it seems that the private market for large machines has already decided to invest in wind farms based on the large turbine concept.

My comment refers to the so-called EURE project included in the EU's Joule programme, which is aimed at demonstrating the technical viability of a large scale wind farm, based on megawatt class wind turbines (750 kW to 2 MW). The project is to carry out a feasibility study for a wind farm of approximately 100 MW (onshore). The overall objective of EURE is to prove the concept of large wind farms for utility application. In this project only European utilities are involved and monitoring of winds at selected sites has begun. EURE is scheduled for completion by the end of 1997 and several work groups are involved, including a group each for technical, commercial, legal and siting considerations.

To me it doesn't make much sense carrying out a feasibility study with the aim of proving or rejecting the viability of large turbines, when it seems that such wind technology is already commercial. Where do I now go to get information to confirm the technical and commercial viability of large wind turbines?

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