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Vestas Debuts Turbines for Wind Farms With Moderate Breezes

Vestas Wind Systems A/S, the turbine maker with the most installed machines, plans to sell two new devices to tap medium and low winds.

The V100 and V110 2-megawatt turbines will allow customers to exploit a wider range of sites, Aarhus, Denmark-based Vestas said today in an e-mailed statement. They’re designed to replace the V90 and V100 1.8-megawatt units, Chief Technology Officer Anders Vedel said today in a telephone interview.

“This step upwards gives a significant increase in electricity production, and doesn’t require much additional training for technicians,” Vedel said. “We can give a stronger business case for any particular wind farm.”

Vestas is 16 months into a two-year turnaround program to reduce fixed costs by 400 million euros ($520 million) and cut the workforce by 30 percent to return to profitability. Its shares have outperformed most peers this year, gaining 47 percent compared with the 23 percent increase in the 10-member BI Global Wind Energy index in the period.

The new V110 turbine will be made with a “structural shell” blade rather than one with a central spar. A blade whose shell bears the load is easier to manufacture, and can be outsourced when required, to cut down shipping costs and open up new markets, Vedel said.

“The longer the blade, the greater the challenge to produce it with a spar,” Vedel said. “The number of tools that goes into the process for a structural shell is reduced considerably.”

Serial production of the two turbines will begin in the second quarter of next year, Vestas said. A prototype of the V110 is due to be installed in Denmark in the first quarter.

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