Gearing up for a new platform2 April 2021
Recent orders, notably in December from the USA for fifteen V162-6.0 MW machines and from Finland for eight V162-6.0 MW turbines to be supplied to the Rasakangas wind project, take the total so far for the new Vestas EnVentus wind turbine technology platform to around 2 GW.
Above: EnVentus V162-6.0 MW at Østerild
The EnVentus modular platform architecture aims to leverage proven system design features from the Vestas 2 MW, 4 MW and 9 MW platforms. The result is a single “versatile platform architecture that delivers a higher level of robustness and performance with the ability to create an even more finely matched combination of turbines to harness available wind energy in any specific location”, thanks to “advanced modularity”, according to Vestas.
The first EnVentus prototype, a V150-5.6 MW turbine, was installed at the Østerild national test centre for large wind turbines in Western Jutland, Denmark.
In October 2020 Vestas announced an upgrade of the EnVentus platform to a 6.0 MW standard rating. The upgrade to 6.0 MW delivers an increase in energy production of more than 3% compared to the 5.6 MW version depending on site-specific conditions, while “siteability parameters are maintained”, says Vestas. The upgrade was achieved by advancements in load assessment and hardware upgrades specific to generator, gearbox and cooling system.
The V162-6.0 MW EnVentus prototype has also been installed at Østerild, next to the V150-5.6 MW prototype, which had already been upgraded to 6.0 MW.
Following an extensive test and verification programme to ensure reliability, serial production of the upgraded EnVentus machine is expected to start in the second quarter of 2021. It will be available with two rotor sizes: V162-6.0 MW and V150-6.0 MW.
With a tip height up to 250 m and a swept area of more than 20 000m2, the V162-6.0 MW employs the largest rotor size in the Vestas portfolio to maximise energy production at low to medium wind sites.
Vestas and ZF Wind Power announced in November the first serial production of an EnVentus powertrain (5.6 MW version) at the ZF plant in Lommel, Belgium.
Above: First serially produced powertrain (5.6 MW version) for the Vestas EnVentus platform at the ZF plant in Lommel (Belgium). The integrated and modular powertrain design includes main shaft, main bearing housing, two-stage planetary gearbox and permanent magnet generator
The EnVentus platform architecture features a full-scale converter, proven from the 4 MW platform, capable of meeting complex and differing grid requirements in local markets, says Vestas. The full-scale converter is matched by a permanent magnet generator for maximum system efficiency and balanced by a medium- speed drivetrain. Borrowed from the 9 MW platform, and known for its mechanical robustness and flexibility, the EnVentus powertrain is optimised to reduce structural loads.
The EnVentus platform employs the Vestas Control System 8000, currently in operation on the 4 MW platform.
A portfolio of standard towers is available, Tubular Steel, High Tubular Steel, Concrete Hybrid and Large Diameter Steel, with hub heights up to 169 m.
Applying Vestas’ most advanced aerofoil blade design combined with the lower rotational speeds of the EnVentus drivetrain, means realisation of power production potential at very low sound power levels, says Vestas, “with a maximum sound power level of 104.3dB(A) and over 30% higher energy production than the V150-4.2 MW, the V162-6.0 MW establishes a new benchmark in competitiveness.”
EnVentus was originally launched as an onshore technology, but potential offshore applications are now envisaged.