Global expenditure for wind turbine Operations and Maintenance (O&M) will rise from $9.25 billion in 2014 to an estimated $17 billion by 2020, driven by increasing numbers of installations and aging turbines, according to research and consulting firm GlobalData. The company’s latest report* states that on average, offshore O&M is two to four times more expensive than onshore O&M. Offshore wind power accounted for about 2.4% of the world’s cumulative wind power capacity in 2014, but accounts for approximately 10% of the global wind O&M market.
Harshavardhan Reddy Nagatham, GlobalData’s Analyst covering Power, says that a wind farm’s O&M is essential as it contributes to value creation, increases turbine availability and boosts returns.
Nagatham explains: “Regular O&M reduces the downtime of a turbine and optimizes electricity generation, which leads to an increase in revenue. In optimal conditions, O&M activity guarantees a useful life of 20 years for a wind farm, which is further extended through improvements and adaptations during the later years of its lifecycle.
“A wind farm’s O&M costs account for 10–15% of the total cost of power generation in an onshore wind farm and 25% in an offshore wind farm. Offshore wind maintenance is more expensive as it requires specialists to lift and install components during repairs and general maintenance, while accessibility for scheduled O&M work can be hampered by harsh weather conditions.”
The analyst adds that while the onshore wind O&M market was valued at over nine times that of its offshore equivalent in 2014, the offshore arena is set to expand at a much faster rate over the forecast period.
Nagatham continues: “The global onshore wind O&M market is forecast to grow in value from $8.34 billion in 2014 to $13.43 billion by 2020, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 9.2%.
“However, the offshore wind O&M market value will increase at a rapid CAGR of 26%, from an estimated $0.91 billion in 2014 to $3.57 billion by 2020, boosting its share from 9.8% to 21%.”
*Global Wind Turbine Operations & Maintenance Market, Update 2015 – Market Size, Major Contenders, Trends, and Analysis to 2020.
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