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FengFeng Zhao is the Strategy Director for the Global Wind Energy Council. Zhao is a well-known wind industry analyst, having created and provided industry leading data and advisory services first for BTM Consult and then for FTI Consulting. His project experience includes advising on global supply chain management, market growth projection, product portfolio development, market entry and exit, regulatory and policy review, O&M, mergers and acquisitions, and dispute support.

Closing the Product Competitiveness Gap

What does it take to be globally competitive in the current wind energy market environment? Philip Sept 16As we approach another season of major industry events at which a series of new turbine product introductions are anticipated, the industry can expect those turbines to have a relatively new design philosophy governing their development.

By Philip Totaro, CEO, IntelStor

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Offshore Innovation Seeing Lift-off

Technology readiness levelsOffshore wind technology development has seen an explosion in the past six years. Almost 80% of all the innovation and technology development in offshore wind has been undertaken in that time-frame. The result has led to the global surge in deployment and the significant cost reductions that have been recognised.

By Philip Totaro, Founder & CEO, IntelStor

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Consolidation Spurs Wind Innovation Revival

ConsolidationThe slump of innovation investments seen in the wind industry back in 2013 is coming to an end. A healthier global market and replenished coffers have inspired a surge in new technology and product development. The global market downturn saw a 34% drop in patent filings in 2013 versus 2012. That same time frame also saw an industry-wide drop from 5.2 to 2.3% in average research & development (R&D) expenditure as a percentage of revenue. The full breadth of patent filings for 2014 will become public in July of this year,(1) but they appear to be trending upwards, with an 18% improvement over 2013 so far. In the meantime, an evaluation of the R&D spend signals a rebound back up to an industry average of 4.7% of revenue based on analysis of 2015 data.

By Philip Totaro, Founder & CEO, IntelStor

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The future of technology – Services

Components which follow a ‘design for service’ philosophy combined with an increasing reliance upon data analysis will be the driving force behind O&M cost totaro april may 16reductions in the coming years. Sub-components which are integrated into the drivetrain, generator, electrical system or blade offer the ability for weight reduction as well as an improvementon reliability, but typically this level of integration makes service more difficult. Striking the right balance is key and modularisation of sub-components has already been undertaken by proactive OEMs and subcomponent suppliers.

By Philip Totaro, Founder & CEO, IntelStor

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Power plant control

Philip Totaro 3 SCADA control center of the offshore wind farm BARD Offshore 1There is an emerging need to operate wind parks similar to conventional power plants, so technologies which enable this capability as part of a power plant control (PPC) system will be favoured in the coming years. Certainly, the Internet of Things (IoT) will play an important role as an underlying platform on which the performance and price optimisation of the wind park will be evaluated and achieved.

By Philip Totaro, Founder & CEO, IntelStor

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The Rise of Asian Innovation

The centre of wind industry innovation is shifting eastwards. Far Eastwards. Increased cash flow among Chinese turbine OEMs has resulted in higher levels of R&D investment. The result is that the quality of innovations is improving, along with the competitiveness of products and service offerings.

By Philip Totaro, CEO, IntelStor

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