Siemens (NYSE: SI) today announced the premier of its new wind turbine. The SWT-2.3-120 is the first wind turbine specifically designed by the company to meet the demands of its North and South American customers. The powerful new turbine features a 120-meter rotor, enabling it to achieve an industry-leading capacity factor. It represents the next step in the evolution of Siemens’ proven G2 product platform. Serial production of the SWT-2.3-120 will commence in the U.S. in 2017.
The product was developed with an eye toward increasing energy production for sites with medium to low wind conditions, which are prevalent in markets within the Americas region. It employs advanced technology including a newly-developed 59-meter long rotor blade, which has been optimized for enhanced production at medium to low wind speeds, while also reducing weights and loads for decreased wear and tear. Siemens’ blade factory in Fort Madison, Iowa, and its aerodynamic engineering center in Boulder, Colorado, were heavily involved in the development of the refined product and its aeroelastically tailored blade.
The drive train of the SWT-2.3-120 has been optimized to deliver maximum energy capture in medium to low wind conditions. At wind speeds ranging from 6 to 8.5 meters per second, the turbine can yield an increase of nearly 10 percent in AEP compared to its predecessor. The results are higher returns and a significant decrease in the projected Levelized Cost of Energy (LCoE). The product design also incorporates several added safety and operational benefits related to the service and maintenance of the turbines, including increased accessibility of key components and access to the weather station from inside the nacelle.
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