Denmark's Vestas Wind Systems, the world's leading manufacturer of wind turbines, is extending the marketing of its V112*-3.0 MW turbine model. Launched earlier this year for low/medium wind onshore sites, the company has now announced a version optimised for offshore use. At the same time, Vestas is entering a partnership with Norwegian research institute Nowitech which has expertise in floating foundations designed for the deployment of wind turbines in deep water. Financial daily newspaper Børsen reports the news.
Norway seems to have become the "happening" place for developments in the offshore wind industry of late, with the first deep-water floating large-capacity wind turbine (Siemens 2.3 MW) put into test by Statoil 10 km offshore in June. That was followed by the USA's GE Wind Energy finalising the takeover of Norwegian turbine technology firm ScanWind and unveiling plans to develop a 3.5 MW turbine for offshore markets. So with Vestas now appearing on the scene, things are getting quite active in the land of the fjords.
In 2007, following some gearbox problems with its V90-3.0 MW wind turbine, Vestas withdrew this model from offshore sales for a few months, creating a partial vacuum in the market and causing Vestas some temporary loss of marketing momentum. With the latest announcement however, Vestas is clearly signalling its determination to assert itself as a major player in the offshore sector.
In a press release, president of Vestas Offshore, Anders Søe-Jensen, writes that the launch of the new model underlines the company's commitment to the sector, and hints that there is more to come: "The V112-3.0 MW Offshore is one more step towards Vestas becoming even more competitive in the offshore market, and we do not intend to stop here. We are in the offshore market for the long run, and we will therefore have even more to reveal in this respect within the coming months.”
Vestas is headquartered in Randers, Jutland, and employs 20,800 people worldwide. The company has installed 38,000 wind turbines in 62 countries on five continents, and has a 20% share of the world market. The company generated revenues in 2008 of EUR 6,035m (USD 7,716m) and for 2009 forecasts revenues of EUR 7,200m (USD 9,206m).
* Vestas' code designation gives a handy guide to size: the number following the V is the diameter of the rotor in metres. So a V112 has a rotor diameter of 112 metres (367 feet) – Ed.