12MW Wind Turbine Prototype to be Installed in Rotterdam

January 22, 2019 by Scott McMahan

GE Renewable Energy and Future Wind (a Joint Venture between Pondera Development and SIF Holding Netherlands) announced the signing of an agreement for Future Wind to install the first Haliade-X 12MW wind turbine prototype. The installation will take place in Maasvlakte-Rotterdam (NL) during summer 2019. The deal includes five years of testing and a 15-year full-service operation and maintenance agreement.

This Haliade-X 12MW prototype will be set up onshore to facilitate access for testing. During its initial period of operations, the onshore location will allow GE Renewable Energy to collect the data needed to obtain a Type Certificate, a crucial step in the product commercialization intended for 2021.

Allard Castelein, CEO of the Port of Rotterdam said "We are proud that GE Renewable Energy and SIF are using our port as a test location to develop the most powerful offshore wind turbine in the world. It confirms the port's reputation and validates our focus on being an attractive partner for the offshore wind industry as it drives the energy transition."

Alderman Bonte, responsible for Rotterdam's Energy Transition, said "In our fight against climate change we need a massive expansion of the number of wind farms at sea. We are delighted that GE has selected the Port of Rotterdam as the test location for the Haliade-X 12MW, which is the largest wind turbine in the world and can therefore help us accelerate the clean energy transition."

John Lavelle, VP & CEO of Offshore Wind at GE Renewable Energy said "As we rapidly progress on assembling the Haliade-X prototype, this announcement is a critical step forward for GE and our customers. The port of Rotterdam has been a real partner and provides all the necessary conditions to test the Haliade-X in the most drastic weather conditions".

Fred van Beers, CEO of Sif Holding Netherlands commented, "We are very pleased to install the Haliade-X 12MW on the Sif site in Rotterdam, supporting Sif's ambition to remain at the forefront of developments in the offshore wind industry. The project also fits Sif's ambition to become entirely CO2 neutral as the Haliade-X 12MW will supply carbon-free energy to the electricity grid."

Activities in Rotterdam to prepare the site for the future installation have just commenced. The nacelle, the enclosed portion of the aerodynamic device housing the turbine mechanism of the Haliade-X 12MW prototype will be assembled in Saint-Nazaire (France), while the three 107 meter-long LM Wind Power blades will be produced in Cherbourg (France), and the tower sections will be made in Seville (Spain). All of the components will be shipped to Rotterdam for pre-assembly work and installation.

This prototype in Rotterdam is part of the $400 (€320) million investment in the Haliade-X development announced by GE Renewable Energy in March 2018 to help reduce offshore wind's cost of energy to make it a more competitive source of clean, renewable energy.

The Future Wind joint venture combines Pondera Consult, a well-known Dutch renewable energy consulting firm, and Sif Holding N.V., a manufacturer of large steel tubes, which are used as foundation components primarily for the offshore wind market.