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Publisher's Note November December 2016

Extending the lifetime of wind turbines

On average the lifetime of a wind turbine is a minimum of 20 years but nowadays owners, developers and manufacturers are trying to extend the lifetime of turbines to lower the levelised cost of energy (LCOE). For instance, this is done by retrofitting older turbines with a modern control system that provides the turbine owner with improvements in relation to remote monitoring, control and root cause analysis. There are already standardised solutions available on the market for specific turbine models and the OEMs are also offering solutions to extend the lifetime of their turbine models.

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Publisher's Note October 2016

Worldwide wind market continues to grow

The market for wind energy continues to grow, and in the last six months an increasing number of turbine deals have been announced compared to the second half of 2015. During the first six months of 2016, global wind turbine orders from 11 vendors in 29 countries totalled nearly 13.5GW, with Vestas overtaking Siemens as the top vendor. According to a new report from Navigant Research, Vestas led all vendors in turbine orders received in the first half of 2016 with 3.5GW of awarded capacity. Vestas has signed deals in at least 16 different countries. Siemens, Gamesa, General Electric and Suzlon rounded out the top five vendors, with Suzlon more than tripling its capacity awarded in the first half of 2016 compared to the second half of 2015. In terms of turbine capacity awarded to regions, Europe retained its leading position in the first half of 2016, gaining 6GW from a handful of large offshore orders and a massive Norwegian project awarded to Vestas. North America and Asia Pacific continued to trail Europe, while Latin America saw a decline in capacity and the Middle East & Africa, taking fifth place, saw an increase.

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Publisher's Note September 2016

Focus on Storage, Smart Energy Solutions and Component Technology Advances

WindEnergy Hamburg will be held from 27 to 30 September. Once again it will be the global business platform for companies in the wind industry, with more than 1,200 exhibitors from over 30 nations presenting their latest products and services for onshore and offshore in a total of nine exhibition halls.

The event will feature national pavilions presenting the wind companies of the respective countries – a total of 18 pavilions are currently registered. The largest country presentation, filling a whole exhibition hall, is from Denmark, with 90 exhibitors. Other pavilions are from European countries such as Belgium, the Netherlands, the UK and Turkey. And the Basque Country makes its presentation in its own pavilion with companies from the offshore sector. The wind energy markets in North and South America will be present with joint pavilions from Argentina, the USA and Canada. Asia is there too, with a national pavilion from China.

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Publisher's Note July August 2016

Brexit and consolidation

On 23 June the UK population voted to leave the EU and although it is difficult to tell what the full consequences of this are it is clear that the renewables industry in the UK will be affected by it. In the short term not much will change, since running projects will be finished as planned. Also the negotiations of a Brexit will take at least two years and during this period the UK is still a EU member country.

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Publisher's Note June 2016

Offshore wind industry is confident of driving costs down by 2020

This year Global Offshore Wind will be organised in Manchester, UK, from 21 to 22 June. A big theme for the offshore wind business is to bring down the levelised cost of energy (LCOE) to be more competitive with other energy sources. And, according to a report from ORE Catapult (the second Cost Reduction Monitoring Framework), the industry is confident of driving costs below GBP 100/MWh by 2020 on the back of long-term market certainty. Offshore wind costs are falling fast, with 12 of 13 cost indicators on or ahead of target. The report shows that investment in turbine technology has delivered significant cost benefits, but that further reduction will need to come from the innovations in ‘balance of plant’, such as foundations, cables and substations. The report warns that investment in research and development and manufacturing industrialisation to deliver such improvements will only come with greater visibility of future rates of deployment and market size as government sets out details of contracts for new offshore wind farms.

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Publisher's Note April May 2016

Records and Developments in the USA and Europe

In 2015 the US wind market saw good performance, with 8.6GW of added capacity, the strongest growth since 2012. Also Congress extended renewable energy usage tax credits by another five years. It looks like the US market is entering a new era and will flourish again, which is good news for all of us. The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) will organise its annual show in New Orleans from 23 till 26 May. The set-up of the show differs a little from the past few years, with the exhibit hall and the educational sessions situated in one contiguous space. This set-up will help increase the interaction between the exhibitors and attendees of the show and hopefully the show will become a lively event again as it used to be before the global financial crisis. Of course Windtzech International will be present in New Orleans, so feel free to come along to pick up your personal copy of the magazine at the media point and/or to say hello.

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Publisher's Note March 2016

Growth in Europe and Around the World

Normally around this time of the year many of us are preparing for the annual wind energy conference organised by the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA). But EWEA has recently signed an agreement with Hamburg Messe und Congress GmbH to host its annual conference in parallel with the WindEnergy Hamburg exhibition at least till 2020 and thus has given up its spot in the first part of the year.

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