Amid skyrocketing energy prices around the world, Enercon installed its first “E-nacelle”, in which the power converter systems are incorporated into the nacelle itself, creating the world’s first “plug and play” nacelle that promises to greatly reduce installation time and leading to lower overall costs for energy.

“The E-nacelle is one of our most important product developments,” said Enercon chief technology officer Jörg Scholle. “By integrating the power system into the nacelle, we have taken the final step towards a state-of-the-art product design for this main component — a substantial contribution to lowering the cost of energy.”

The 5.56MW E-160 EP5 E3 turbine was installed at a wind farm in Hämelhausen in Lower Saxony, Germany, and incorporates the inverter and transformer into the nacelle itself, rather than at the tower base. The placement of equipment into the nacelle doubles its length, from- seven to 14 meters, but otherwise the nacelle remains comparable to previous versions at 4.99 metres wide and 3.4 metres tall. The power converter systems are installed in the factory, reducing the amount of field time required for installation.

“We are proud that we can install the first wind energy converter with E-nacelle. The new concept has already proved its worth in the real world. Its plug and play features optimise processes at the construction site significantly,” says construction manager Andreas Behrens.

The E-nacelle has a transport weight of 80 tonnes and its compact design enable easier production, transport, and logistics as well as installation, lowering costs.

The machine can be installed at a variety of hub heights ranging from 99-166 metres, and has a rotor diameter of 160 metres — the largest of all Enercon turbines.