REpower Unveils 5MW Offshore Wind Turbine

October 07, 2003 by Jeff Shepard

REpower Systems (Hamburg, Germany), a developer of wind power rotors and turbines, unveiled a 5MW machine designed for offshore use. With a rotor diameter of 126.5m and a rotor swept area of over 12,000m², the new REpower 5M is now the largest wind turbine in the world, according to the company. The prototype will be erected onshore in early 2004 in Brunsbüttel, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. Plans are being drawn up to erect other turbines at additional onshore test sites in preparation for a rapid market launch in 2004.

It was primarily developed for offshore applications. The technical design of the offshore giant is based on the company's MD and MM Series. The REpower 5M has a modular drive train with a double bearing on the main shaft and a combined planetary/spur gearing that has been optimized for the turbine's intended application. The long rotor blade ensures high yields of electrical generation. The onshore version will have a hub height of 120m, making the turbine as a whole over 180m tall.

REpower is planning a rapid market launch for the 5M. Plans to erect the wind turbine at additional test sites in the course of 2004 have reached an advanced stage. REpower is also introducing a 12-year, full-service maintenance package that covers all maintenance and repair work for turbines and guarantees operators 97% availability in the first five years, and 96% thereafter.