Siemens have designed a new offshore wind turbine which is optimized to work efficiently on high seas. Siemens want to reduce the cost of electricity production by wind turbines, It’s goal is to reduce cost upto 10 euro cents for 1 kWh of electricity by 2020 and 8 euro cents for 1 kWh electricity by 2025.
The newly designed wind turbine is capable of producing 8 MW of power whereas the old generation wind turbines designed by the same company were not able to produce more than 7 MW of power. The new turbine has rotor diameter of 154 metres which is same as previous models, but the new one is 10% more efficient in suitable conditions. This improvement is enough to power 8000 new houses per year with electricity
If above figures are accurate than 9 wind turbines will be able to produce same amount of electricity as 10 turbines. This will lead to reduction in maintenance and operation cost per watt energy production. The higher electricity output is due to stronger permanent magnets installed by Siemens. The prototype of this new design SWT-8.0-154 is under testing and when certified, it will be installed in large scale.
Stronger Permanent Magnet and Light weight
This new model doesn’t require a gearbox to be coupled with generator to increase the rotation speed. The rotor is directly coupled with the generator. The generator has strong permanent magnets. Due to absence of heavy gearbox, the system is lightweight and compact. No gearbox means less parts and less maintenance cost. Directly coupled turbines have good efficiency even at slow wind speed.
To increase the electricity production, Siemens introduced stronger permanent magnets in the generator. The stronger magnet is able to induce stronger current. They achieved this by changing the composition of magnet. They also redesigned the convertor which they manufacture by themselves.
Other hardware like rotor and power transformer are the same. Except gearbox and magnet, engineers depended on old tried and tested technology for creating the new model.