Siemens has started field testing its new 6MW offshore wind turbine in Østerild, Denmark. The direct-drive wind turbine is equipped with the world’s longest rotor blades – each measuring 75 metres in length – and has a rotor diameter of 154 metres.
Once they go into commercial production, Siemens claims each 6MW offshore wind turbine will be able to produce 25m kilowatt hours of electricity – enough to supply 6,000 homes. The company is anticipating that the turbine will become "the new benchmark" in the offshore wind industry.
"The start of field testing of the 154-metre rotor for the 6MW [turbine] is an exciting step in the development of competitive technologies for the large offshore wind farms of the future," said Henrik Stiesdal, chief technology officer of the wind power division within Siemens Energy.
The Siemens rotor, which consists of three 75-metre rotor blades and has a diameter of 154 metres, is assembled on the ground at the Østerild test centre in Denmark. Image via Siemens
According to the company, the 6MW turbine will be the lightest turbine in its class, weighing 200 tonnes. The turbine has been developed specifically for demanding conditions in offshore locations.
"The new 6MW turbine is a milestone in wind energy technology," said Stiesdal.
He said the company’s first 30-kilowatt turbine, developed 30 years ago, had blades that were five metres long. Meanwhile, the company said its latest 75-metre rotor blades compare in length to that of an Airbus 380 plane.
The 154-metre rotor was mounted on the 6MW turbine at the new national test centre at Østerild, Denmark, via cranes. The turbine began operating on 6 October.
Siemens is claiming the rotor will have a swept area of 18,600 metres – almost the equivalent of two and a half football pitches.