Besides increasing the number of wind turbines and the area size of the whole project site, another way of raising the total generation capacity of an offshore wind farm is to adopt wind turbines that can deliver higher efficiency and power output. Siemens Gamesa, a major manufacturer of wind turbines, recently unveiled the design of the largest offshore wind turbine so far on the record. Known as the SG 14-222 DD, this model has a rotor diameter of 222 meters and a generation capacity of 14 megawatts. According to the company’s press releases, a prototype is scheduled to appear in Denmark by 2021. Afterwards, the model is expected to be commercially available for projects around the world, including Taiwan’s Hai Long offshore wind farms.
The previous record holder of the world’s largest offshore wind turbine was the 12-megawatt Haliade-X developed by GE Renewable Energy. With a total height of 260 meters and a rotor diameter of 220 meters, the Haliade-X produced its first kilowatt-hour of electricity off the coast of Scotland in November 2019. Although the SG 14-222 DD is just two meters wider in rotor diameter than the Haliade-X, Siemens Gamesa claims that the addition of its proprietary “Power Boost” technology can further raise the generation capacity of the SG 14-222 DD to a maximum of 15 megawatts.
Based on the information from the company’s website, the SG 14-222 DD has a blade length of 108 meters and a swept area of 39,000 square meters, or around 5.5 times the size of a standard football field. In terms of annual generation, the SG 14-222 DD offers an increase of over 25% compared with the SG 11.0-220 DD, which was previously the company’s largest offshore wind turbine and has a capacity of 10 megawatts. Under the ideal operating environment, a single SG 14-222 DD is capable of supplying enough electricity for the annual consumption of 18,000 European households. Despite its size, the nacelle weight of the SG 14-222 DD is limited to just 500 metric tons thanks to a more efficient design that reduces the amount of sourced materials. Since the nacelle is rather light by industry standards, Siemens Gamesa is also able to further reduce the weights of the tower and the foundation. All these optimizations translate into lower costs for manufacturing and transportation.
Siemens Gamesa plans to install a prototype of the SG 14-222 DD off the coast of Denmark before the autumn of 2021 and then officially make the model available on the market in 2024.
Soon after the unveiling of the SG 14-222 DD on May 19, Siemens Gamesa and Hai Long Offshore Wind jointly announced on May 26 that this new turbine model is the first choice for the 300-megawatt Hai Long 2 wind farm that is situated off the west coast of Taiwan. The proposed number of the SG 14-222 DD that will be installed at Hai Long 2 is still pending on the finalization of the construction plan as well as the site-specific conditions. There is also a strong possibility that the SG 14-222 DD will be adopted for the remaining Hai Long projects, which have a total planned capacity of 1,044 megawatts.
(News source: TechNews. Photo credit: Siemens Gamesa.)