- Published: 24 December 2015 24 December 2015
The wind energy market continues to mature, as onshore turbines pursue evolutionary technology, while dramatic technology shifts remain focused on offshore turbines. Many technology initiatives will become more evolutionary in nature, as turbine OEMs leverage existing platforms and technologies, while differences in regional demand will require mass customisation of product lines to meet the needs of global target markets.
Wind energy is nearing the critical point of grid parity in many markets, where LCOE is competitive with traditional forms of thermal power generation. Despite longer product cycles, offshore wind defines the innovation horizon, as the most radical technological approaches continue to be applied to this segment. The 6-10 MW turbines that will be introduced over the coming years are stretching the limits of traditional technologies. These turbines require game-changing technologies in order to deliver a cost-effective turbine with reliability to withstand the challenges of an offshore environment, with every component must be effectively re-engineered at this scale, resulting in dramatically different drivetrains, rotor systems and power electronics. In the onshore segment, technology initiatives will become more evolutionary in nature, as turbine OEMs leverage existing platforms, technologies and cost positions. The risk appetite of onshore developers does not allow for radically different approaches to turbine design, as dramatically modified components suffer from limited supply chain options, limiting the cost competitiveness of ‘revolutionary’ technology. MAKE’s Global Wind Turbine Trends 2015 is a 62-page report containing over 100 charts, tables and graphs providing in-depth analysis of global wind turbine trends.