October 24 (Renewables Now) - MHI Vestas Offshore Wind will test its V164-9.5 MW turbine, the world's most powerful wind turbine, at Clemson University in South Carolina, the parties said today.
The 50/50 joint venture between Denmark's Vestas Wind Systems A/S (CPH:VWS) and Japan's Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (TYO:7011) has decided to carry out all testing and verification of the turbine's gearbox and main bearings at the university's 15-MW test bench. The move represents MHI Vestas' first major investment in the US and comes as the manufacturer says the V164-9.5 MW is the turbine most likely to be used for the first round of major offshore wind projects in the country.
A total of USD 35 million (EUR 29.7m) will be invested in the testing, with Clemson to receive up to USD 23 million over five years. The project will allow MHI Vestas to better understand how the 9.5-MW gearbox and bearings will react over a lifecycle of more than 20 years. The company said the test results can help it optimise the service strategy for the turbine to ensure its reliability and minimise the fatigue on components.
Clemson University boasts a USD-98-million facility to test wind-turbine drivetrain technology, supported by a 2009 grant from the US Department of Energy.
(USD 1 = EUR 0.850)