Gamesa, a global technology leader in wind energy, inaugurated the company's maiden offshore wind turbine - and the first to be installed in Spain - in Arinaga Quay (Gran Canary Island). The inauguration ceremony was attended by the President of the Canary Islands regional government, Paulino Rivero, the Minister for Industry, Energy and Tourism, José Manuel Soria, and the Chairman of Gamesa, Ignacio Martín.
This first Gamesa 5 MW Offshore turbine constitutes a milestone in the company's product strategy, marking the company's entry into the offshore energy segment. Gamesa's platform is set to become a benchmark in the sector thanks to the low cost of energy it offers customers.
With this launch, Gamesa is displaying its appetite for competing at the top level of the wind power industry, demonstrating that the wind is a competitive source of energy that makes a significant contribution to containing energy prices and that it is capable of competing head-to-head with nuclear and coal fired energy and close to grid parity with hydro and CCGT powered energy on a normalized cost basis.
The G128-5.0 MW wind turbine, the first 5.0 MW Offshore platform prototype, has a rotor with a diameter of 128m and a total height of 154m. Since it started operating last July, it has been producing energy at full capacity, dispatching more than 1 GWh to the grid in that time and generating enough power to supply 7,500 households in the Canary Islands each year. The facility's start-up a prerequisite in the process of securing type certification, slated for the first quarter of 2014. Mass production will commence over the course of next year.
The turbine parts were made entirely in Spain, although teams from all over the world participated in the product's design and development phases:
The blades, each of which measures 62.5m long and weighs 15 tonnes, making them the longest ever produced and transported in Spain and among the longest in Europe, were made at the factory in Aoiz (Navarre)
The nacelle, which measures over 12.5m long, 4m tall and 4m wide and weighs 72 tonnes, was made in Tauste (Zaragoza)
The tower, which stretches nearly 90m high, was made by Windar (a joint venture between Gamesa and Daniel Alonso)
The electric parts were made in Lerma (power train), Benissano (electric control cabinets), Coslada (converters) and Reinosa (generator)
The G128 -5.0 MW Offshore turbine is built using technology proven and validated by the company in its 4.5 MW platform and leverages the know-how and track record built up in the field. It is designed with redundant modules, guaranteeing reliable performance and maximizing energy output, thereby streamlining the cost of energy.
Over 1.3 million engineering hours went into designing and validating the patented technology fitted into the offshore turbine in more than 100 accredited laboratories and testing centers in the US, Asia and Europe. The turbine's various parts were subjected to over 618 tests, including around 100 functional trials in the field.
In parallel Gamesa is working on a new generation of turbines that will cater to emerging demands in the offshore market. There are plans to develop 7/8 MW platforms, to which end it is open to forging alliances with strategic and financial investors with a view to sharing the funding requirement for competing in this segment.