Haliad-X “it will make a difference if technology and costs are balanced and controlledSays Shashi Barla of Wood Mackenzie.

General Electric has finished manufacturing the first nacelle for its new 12 megawatt offshore wind turbine, known as Haliade-X, as the company strives to establish itself as a competitor in the offshore market of Siemens Gamesa and MHI Vestas.

After presenting the Haliade-X project with great enthusiasm last year, GE has announced that it will soon ship the first nacelle from its production site in Saint-Nazaire, France, to a test center in the Netherlands. Low. A second pod will be dispatched later this year to a test site in UK waters, assuring GE that it will get its ‘type certificate’ next year.

This leaves Haliade-X in a good position to start commercial shipments in mid-2021, allowing GE to start increasing its share of the European offshore wind market, which increasingly focuses on competitive auctions.

Haliad-X “it will make a difference if technology and costs are balanced and controlled“Said Shashi Barla, senior analyst covering the global wind power supply chain and technology at Mackenzie Power & Renewable Wood.

There are currently no turbines for sale that exceed 10 megawatts, Barla said. The largest rotor diameter of the Haliade-X “increase the capacity factor of the turbines and result in higher annual energy production“, He said.

However, there are several potential challenges for the Haliade-X in the market.

GE’s record in offshore wind is relatively slim, said Barla, with around 500 megawatts of installed capacity globally, compared to more than 15 gigawatts for Siemens Gamesa (including its license agreement with Shanghai Electric in China).

Additionally, installation vessels may not be ready to handle such large components when the turbine first hits the market, added Barla.

Already one of the world’s largest suppliers of onshore wind turbines, GE re-entered the offshore wind market with the acquisition in 2015 of the French company Alstom.

GE has had major successes at sea, including the recently completed 396 megawatt Merkur project in the German North Sea and the 30 megawatt ├śrsted Block Island wind farm, the only operating offshore wind farm in the United States.

But with the 6-megawatt version of the Haliade platform losing ground to ever-larger competitive models, GE has doubled the speed by announcing its 12-megawatt monster. A single Haliade-X built off the coast of Germany could generate around 67 gigawatt hours of electricity per year, enough for 16,000 European households, according to GE.

Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy and MHI Vestas currently dominate the offshore wind turbine market, which account for nearly three-quarters of total installed capacity worldwide, according to WoodMac. Their combined share is expected to decline a bit in the coming years, but this is largely due to the rise of Chinese suppliers in their own fast growing domestic market.

As General Electric continues to look for ways to recover from the financial challenges of recent years, a period marked by profound restructuring and the departure of several CEOs, all signs point to continued investment and confidence in its power unit. independent. Renewable, based in France.

The company is actively investing in the Haliade-X for its market launch. The Haliade-X blades will also be manufactured in France by the GE LM Wind Power subsidiary.

WoodMac forecasts 70 gigawatts of installed offshore wind capacity worldwide by the end of 2023, up from 24 gigawatts today.

GE is expected to start dramatically increasing its share of the offshore wind market from 2021, WoodMac said. Swedish utility company Vattenfall, for example, plans to use the Haliade-X in future projects.

Haliad-X “is an exceptional and strategic project for GEJohn Lavelle, CEO of Offshore Wind’s GE Renewable Energy, said in a statement. “We are about to start marketing this new product very soon.

Despite this, GE has yet to secure an order in the burgeoning offshore wind market in the United States.