Chinese wind group Ming Yang has set the seal on a heads of agreement with Norway's Marin Energi Testcenter (MetCentre) to erect a 6MW Super Compact Drive (SCD) turbine prototype off the coast of the Scandinavian country.
The flagship machine, a jacket-based two-bladed model with a 140-metre diameter rotor from German designer aerodyn, would become only the second full-scale prototype installed off Norway, after Statoil’s 2.3MW Hywind floater in 2009.
Final sign-off on the pilot project, which Recharge understands could be expanded to encompass an array of the machines at the Karmoy demonstration area in the North Sea, is expected by "late 2014".
"We are pleased to enter into this heads of agreement and looking forward to the installation of our SCD 6MW offshore prototype in Norway, and this marks another milestone in Ming Yang's off-shore strategy," states Ming Yang chief executive Chuanwei Zhang.
"We are confident that our innovative SCD wind turbine generators can provide an effective solution for offshore wind power projects in China and beyond."
Designed for high reliability and low weight, the turbine concept features a small-footprint gearbox and permanent magnet generator coupled housed in a water-cooled sealed nacelle.The innovative two-bladed rotor can be locked in a horizontal position to ride out extreme offshore weather conditions, including typhoons.
Components for the 6MW machine have already been manufactured in China as part of Ming Yang’s planned two-turbine, shallow-water Rudong pilot, where installation of the delayed first unit is slated for this summer.
Ming Yang has won approval from the Rudong energy bureau to move ahead with its 300MW project off the coast of Jiangsu Province.
Ming Yang, through its Jiangsu Mingyang Wind Power Technology subsidiary, has been looking at a range of wind turbines for the project including the two-bladed 6MW “super compact drive” (SCD) design being developed with Germany’s Aerodyn.
Aerodyn also has an 168-metre-diameter rotored 8MW model on the drawing-board, and is developing floating foundation concepts for deep water installation.
MetCentre is a Norwegian test centre for marine energy offering infrastructure and services to off-shore wind power.