Samsung Heavy Industries’ prototype 7MW offshore wind turbine nacelle has been delivered to the National Renewable Energy Centre’s (Narec) new test facilities in Blyth, UK, signalling the next step in the evolution of the mega-sized technology that will be used in the Round 3 offshore wind zones.
Initially, Samsung’s nacelle will be employed in commissioning Narec’s £47 million independent 15 MW capacity test facility, before a six-month testing programme begins on the nacelle itself.
During the test programme, some of the harshest climatic conditions will be simulated, including wind gusts of up to 150 mph and once-in-a-lifetime events, to ensure any performance issues can be identified and rectified before the technology is deployed offshore.
The 15MW test facility opened earlier this summer and has been designed to support the industry’s drive to make offshore wind power generation more competitive with other energy sources through up-scaling the technology and reducing the costs associated with at-sea failures.
The Energy Technologies Institute (ETI) has invested £25 million in the facility through the design, development and commissioning of the indoor test rig by GE Energy-Power Conversion and MTS Systems Corporation. The ETI is a public-private partnership between global energy and engineering companies and the UK government.