Danish wind turbine specialist Vestas was already looking to claim the title of the world’s largest offshore wind turbine with its proposed V164 that boasts a diameter of 164 m (538 ft). The company claims the V164 was developed with the potential of increasing its turbine size and now it has done just that, upping the capacity from seven to eight megawatts. So not only is the V164 set to boast the largest swept area of any single wind turbine, it will also claim the title for the world’s largest capacity wind turbine.
The current titleholder for the largest swept area goes to the G10X prototype installed by Gamesa in Spain, with a rotor diameter of 128 m (420 ft) and a capacity of 4.5 MW. Meanwhile, with a rated capacity of 7.58 MW and rotor diameter of 126 m (413 ft), the Enercon E-126 has held the title for the world’s largest capacity wind turbine since its introduction in 2007.
“As we progressed in the technology development it was clear that an 8 MW version of the turbine will offer lower cost of energy and at the same time keep the reliability and structural integrity of the turbine unchanged,” says Anders Vedel, Vestas Executive Vice President and CTO.
The company is currently constructing a purpose-built test bench that is due to enter service in January 2013 and will allow the company to conduct in-house testing of the turbine’s complete drivetrain. The first V164-8.0 MW turbine isn’t due to be installed in Oesterid, Denmark until 2014, so with a number of other companies working on 10 MW and higher wind turbines, it remains to be seen whether Vestas’ effort will actually be able to claim the records. But at the moment the company definitely seems well placed to do so.