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Africa's tallest-ever wind turbine on way with new-look design

Nabrawind's self-erecting 144-metre steel design set to be installed in Morocco later this year

The tallest wind turbine tower yet in Africa will be erected in Morocco following signing of a deal with Spanish technology outfit Nabrawind.

The company’s self-erecting steel Nabralift design, which also features a lightweight piled-in foundation, will support a 3.6MW Siemens Gamesa turbine with a hub height of 144 metres.

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“This is the first Nabralift firm order for Nabrawind. This tower allows the installation of a full wind turbine – tower, nacelle, rotor – without using large-size cranes regardless of the final hub-height,” said the company.

“The [Nabralift] is conceived to install the lowermost sections of the tower at the last part of the assembly process. For this purpose, it is able to hoist the wind turbine in intermediate stages and install tower sections under it.”

Construction of the foundation – which uses 80m3 of concrete and 10 tonnes of steel, as compared to the 500m3 of concrete and 60 tonnes of steel used by ‘gravitational’ designs – will begin this summer, with the remainder of the installation taking place “at the end of this year and the beginning of the next”.

To-date the tallest wind turbine in Africa was in South Africa, a 115-meter tower installed by Siemens Gamesa. The world’s record-holder is currently a 178-metre tower installed in Germany.

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