Development of a 5MW offshore wind turbine generator system has been announced by Hitachi with the HTW5.2-136 including a downwind configuration. The new system features a 15% larger rotor swept area to increase output in light-wind regions that have annual average wind speeds below 7.5m/s.
Scheduled to begin a trial run in October onshore at the Fukashiba Wind Power Station in Kashim-aport of Hitachi Wind Power, the system was established by Hitachi Capital Corporation with co-funding by Hitachi on the Kamisu City waterfront in Ibaraki Prefecture.
Should the trial run prove successful, Hitachi Wind Power intends to release the new wind turbine generator system in FY2017. In addition, the rated power of the previous model, the HTW5.0-126, has been increased to 5.2MW, and will be released as the HTW5.2-127.
The use of renewable energy is spreading in Japan, due in part to the feed-in tariff scheme that was introduced in July 2012 to encourage the creation of a low-carbon society. As an archipelago of islands, there is also potential for Japan to make greater use of offshore wind turbine generators and take advantage of these vast areas of open sea with extensive wind resources, with minimal constraints on site availability and transportation.
A number of these installations are currently being planned. In order to generate power more efficiently, offshore wind turbine generator systems must be both extremely reliable and have a large per-turbine output.
Hitachi's turbine generator systems command the top share in Japan in terms of orders, with a cumulative total of about 250 turbines having been ordered, of which 118 are currently in commercial operation. In addition to the first 5MW wind turbine generator system that began operation at Hitachi Wind Power's Fukashiba Wind Power Station in Kashima-port in September 2015, the 5MW system has also been selected for the Fukushima Floating Offshore Wind Farm Demonstration Project (Fukushima FORWARD) currently is being undertaken by the Fukushima Offshore Wind Consortium. In the past, Hitachi has sought to increase the per-turbine power output by developing a 2MW wind turbine generator system for regions with light winds, and by adding a 2.5MW wind turbine generator system to its product range.
Hitachi has increased the rated power of the new HTW5.2-136 5MW-class wind turbine system to 5.2MW by optimising its setup and its control programs. It has also made it possible to increase output in light-wind regions that have an annual average wind speed below 7.5m/s by increasing the rotor diameter to 136m, thereby enlarging the wind swept area by 15% more than the previous model. In the future, Hitachi intends to market the HTW5.2-136 for use in light-wind regions along the coasts of Honshu, the main island of Japan.
They also plans to market the HTW5.2-127 for use at windier sites, such as the coasts of Hokkaido, northern part of the Tohoku region on Honshu, and southern Kyushu, which require wind turbines with the ability to withstand stronger winds. The rated power of the HTW5.2-127 has also been increased from that of the previous HTW5.0-126 model by optimising its setup and its control programs.