Alstom's Haliade factories take shape

Alstom has transported new industrial machinery and partly assembled wind turbines to the site of its planned Saint-Nazaire manufacturing complex as it gears up to begin serial production of its 6MW Haliade150s early next year.

Some 150 tons of equipment have been moved to the port facility, with preparation of the factories expected to continue to the end of the month.

First off the assembly line will be five turbines – which feature 73.5-metre blades and a rotor sweep of almost 18,000 square metres – for Deepwater Wind's Block Island demonstration project off the east coast of the US.

"Special logistics therefore had to be set up for this operation in order to move that equipment designed by Alstom that exists nowhere else in the world," says Alstom.

"The transfer of equipment is a vital step in the plant project. New manufacturing equipment will be installed and tested, and the works will resume with the last finishing touches inside the buildings."

Saint-Nazaire is a "key component" in Alstom's industrial strategy to manufacture the whole of its next-generation turbine in France, creating 1,000 direct and 4,000 indirect jobs.