Turkey's first locally made megawatt-scale wind turbines could soon be rolling off the production line at Istanbul-based Model Enerji. The company was founded in early 2008 by veterans of Turkey's energy sector specifically to manufacture turbines. In August, Model Enerji signed an exclusive contract with American Superconductor Corporation (AMSC) to manufacture, sell, install, operate and maintain AMSC's 1.65 MW model in Turkey. The deal also includes non-exclusive rights for surrounding Mediterranean and east European countries. No financial details of the deal were disclosed, beyond the fact that AMSC will receive an up-front licence fee plus a royalty payment on the first 425 turbines produced. Model Enerji is building a factory in Ankara and plans to have the first two prototypes running by the summer, with commercial production following soon after. The plan is to produce about 100 turbines a year, more if there is sufficient demand. The company says it has received "a lot" of orders from around the world, but declines to give further details. Model Enerji will produce the turbines in association with two local partners. Pars Makina Ltd, which makes turbo and rotary heat engines, will assemble the turbines and SNC Kalite will undertake certification and quality assurance of component suppliers and of the assembly workshop. The aim is to source the majority of components locally by 2012, which should mean lower production costs. As always, AMSC retains the right of first refusal to provide the electrical systems for all the turbines made by its new licence partner. Model Enerji secures the right to license a 2 MW or 2.5 MW turbine design from AMSC if it reaches certain volume production levels for the 1.65 MW unit. The AMSC turbine designs originate from Windtec, an Austrian wind turbine design firm bought by AMSC in 2006.
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