Clipper Windpower Plc (LON:CWP) announced today that it will develop the world's largest offshore wind turbine rated at 7.5 MW. It has established a Centre of Excellence for Offshore Wind in Blyth, United Kingdom and the " Project" has attracted support from the UK's One NorthEast Regional Development Agency.
The development of the 7.5 MW wind turbine will build upon the advanced architecture and technology of Clipper's Liberty 2.5 MW turbine which, in September 2007, was recognized for its unparalleled levels of efficiency, reliability and reduced cost of energy by way of a commendation awarded to Clipper by the United States Department of Energy.
One NorthEast's Blyth-based New and Renewable Energy Centre (NaREC) will provide the Britannia Project with a support package for engineering and test laboratory, including its world-class wind turbine blade testing facilities. Engineering for the project will be shared between Clipper's Advanced Technology Group, based in Carpinteria, California, and Clipper operations in Blyth. Funding provided by One NorthEast also will support the development of Clipper's turbine supply chain and related manufacturing facilities.
Clipper considers the North East as its global location of choice for this project which may lead to future manufacturing and job creation in the region.
In late Septembe Clipper announced that it will supply 120 units, or 300 MW, of Clipper's 2.5 MW Liberty wind turbines to BP for delivery in 2009. This 300 MW transaction is among up to 2,250 MW of wind turbine sales contracts envisioned in the Strategic Turbine Supply And Joint Development Agreement (the "Agreement") between Clipper and BP announced on July 14, 2006. With the addition of this latest contract, firm wind turbine sales orders, including wind turbine supply for a joint development completed under the Agreement currently total 650 MW for deliveries through 2009.
The company has more than 5,600 MW (2,240 units) of firm and contingent orders of the Liberty for deliveries beginning in 2007 through 2011.
No further information could be found for the 7.5 MW "Britannia" turbine, but the following was found (pdf was very slow to load) for the 2.5 MW Liberty, on which the "Britania," now in production, will be based. I would expect that similar features would be incorporated into the 7.5 MW model:
- Four totally enclosed IP54 synchronous permanent magnet generators, rated power each 660 kW at 1133 rpm, voltage 1320 VDC at rated power, with form-wound class H insulated stator, operating at temperatures less than class F temperature rise, rated for medium temperatures and available in either air-cooled or water-cooled versions.
- Simplified variable speed offers greater reliability. patented variable speed system is simpler, more reliable, and meets IEEE 519 high quality power requirements now common in all major electricity power markets.
- Power is delivered exclusively from the generator’s stator where it is rectified to DC current. Advanced and more reliable IGBT’s convert the DC power to AC current, simply and efficiently maintaining the unit’s desired power factor. By way of this simplified process, the need for troublesome slip rings and brushes is eliminated.
- Control system uses 3 phase 480 V, embeded Motorola Power PCs which provides high reliability with simplicity. Through the use of high-speed embedded processors, algorithm processing is repeated every 50 milliseconds. Because unity power factor is produced down to a low percentage of rated power, the need for VAR correction at the substation is reduced. Through the system’s line power factor control, Liberty rides through system faults and line outages for up to three seconds.
- Four power converters, voltage sourced, IGBT based, 6 pulse, inverters voltage 690 VAC, 50Hz or 60Hz + 3Hz
- Liberty’s lightning receptors at the tip of each blade connect through brushes on the blade bearing and main shaft to carry lighting strike current down the tower to ground.
- Liberty’s two-person service lift facilitates timely and efficient service. Access to and from Liberty’s hub is through a trio of man-sized ports located inside her nacelle housing; which contains a full, stand-up workspace, the convenience of a workbench, and near obstacle-free walkways. There is no need to exit the topside of the nacelle to drop into the hub for service functions. A 6’x12’ roll-down door located at the stern of Liberty’s nacelle provides a wide and open access if ever a need for component change out.
- An on-board, two-metric ton service hoist. Available to assist with standard maintenance activities, if the need were to arise, Liberty’s hoist can also be used to efficiently changeout generators, high speed gears, yaw motors and pitch motors.
- Warranted for two to five years, based on cutomers unique operations needs.
- Service Hoist On-Board, 2 Metric-ton Jib Hoist