In a move to gain independence in manufacturing wind turbines, Germany-based Prokon says it will partner with The Switch for its permanent-magnet generators (PMG) and full-power converters. For The Switch, this is the second contract with a German customer for a direct drive, 3-MW PMG. For Prokon, this opens new markets.
The generator and converter package is said to let users glean more energy from wind. The turbines will mainly be used for Prokon’s wind farms. The company says the drive-train packages will let it move quickly with preferred permanent-magnet technology for reliability, maximized yields, and high-quality power that matches international grid codes.
According to Ralf Dohmann, Managing Director of Prokon Energiesysteme GmbH, it has always been the company’s goal to do everything themselves. “This cooperation with The Switch marks a milestone for Prokon to manage the entire process from wind turbine manufacturing through operations and maintenance,” he says.
“We will bring a third generation direct-drive PMG with first-class technical features and manufacturability to the market,” says The Switch CEO Jukka-Pekka Mäkinen. “We have also been able to solve logistical challenges despite the large size of the machine.” Generators for 4 MW have 6-m diameters.
“Germany’s recent decision to withdraw from the use of nuclear power has been a brave move, but one that Prokon has recognized some time ago,” he adds. It is also a move that should benefit Finnish wind power component suppliers.
Prokon is one of Germany’s new energy firms with over 15 years of experience from developing, financing, and managing wind farms. To date, the company has installed 266 turbines, in 37 farms, in six different German federal states, as well as in neighboring Poland where the first Prokon wind farm is due to start 2011. Once equipped with complete manufacturing capability, the company plans to expand to other markets in Northern Europe, including Finland.
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