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3rd October 2018, The Netherlands

Next generation blades boost for wind power

Following its acquisition of LM Wind Power in 2017, GE Renewable Energy is taking wind turbine performance to the next level.

The company’s new Cypress 5.3-158 onshore wind turbine offers a 50% increase in annual energy production (AEP) over the life of the turbine compared to a 3 MW platform.

GE Renewable Energy’s new Cypress 5.3-158 onshore wind turbine offers a 50% increase in annual energy production. © GE Renewable Energy

It is characterised by carbon fibre composite blades with a revolutionary two-piece design, enabling them to be manufactured at even longer lengths and improving logistics to offer more siting options.

The proprietary longer blades will help drive down both logistical costs and the cost of electricity produced, allowing installation in locations that were previously inaccessible, with assembly taking place onsite. In addition, the blade tips provide greater flexibility to address site wind conditions and requirements.

The carbon blades were developed through the long-time partnership between GE’s Onshore Wind business, its Global Research Centre and LM Wind Power, taking advantage of the research, design and large-scale manufacturing expertise of these teams to bring the blades from concept to a tested and proven reality.

The Cypress 5.3-158 advances the proven technology of GE’s 2 MW and 3 MW fleets, which already serve an installed base of nearly 20 GW, while also utilising architecture and innovations from the 4.8-158 turbine introduced in 2017. It is the second major technology platform launch of the year for GE, which introduced the Haliade-X offshore turbine platform in March.

The carbon blades were developed through the long-time partnership between GE’s Onshore Wind business, its Global Research Centre and LM Wind Power. © GE Renewable Energy

The machine is being specifically designed for services, with enhancements to help with facilitating up-tower repairs and troubleshooting with its up-tower electrical system, while also pushing the limits of traditional reliability levels on major components, through increased systems level hardware testing and more robust manufacturing processes. This combination of planned, condition-based and predictive services will help to ensure more reliability, uptime and production, while ultimately lowering lifecycle costs for the customer.

“Our mission is to enable our customers to set the pace for lowering the cost of electricity around the world, as their needs continue to evolve,” said Pete McCabe, CEO of GE’s Onshore Wind business. “The Cypress platform builds on our track record of success and positions our technology for scalability and flexibility for the coming years. The prototype Cypress 4.8-158 is currently under production at our Salzbergen facility in Germany, and we are looking forward to deploying and commissioning it by the end of the year. This platform will enable our customers to achieve a new level of competitiveness in the power generation marketplace.”

“This exciting blade enhancement is revolutionising the offerings that we can provide for GE’s customers,” said Duncan Berry, CEO of GE’s LM Wind Power.  “Our team used a disruptive design methodology and customer feedback to re-examine our entire design and manufacturing process. By looking at this blade in an entirely new way, we achieved a technology breakthrough that will allow us to bring the new blades to market even faster for our customers.”

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