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Enormous Wind Turbine Breaks Records

The world’s largest wind turbine has broken the 24-hour power generation record.

Ask any Scandinavian what Denmark makes them think of, and they’re likely to mention cheap beer, the predominately flat terrain, and the language, which is softer and rounder than the other Scandinavian languages. Something else that will almost certainly come up is wind turbines. Denmark has bet heavily on wind power since the 1970s, and you’ll be hard pressed to travel any greater distance in the country without encountering them.

It isn’t surprising then, that Denmark is breaking wind power generation records. A massive new V164 wind turbine from MHI Vestas Offshore Wind has done just that, by producing almost 216,000kWh in a 24 hour period at its test site in Østerild, Denmark. The turbine is a 9MW prototype based on the earlier V164-8.0 MW which was developed in 2012 and commercially released in 2014.

Generally speaking, when it comes to wind power, larger plants are more efficient. They produce more power and that also translates to a reduction of costs for installation and maintenance per kilowatt hour. And when it comes to size, the V164 is a behemoth and miles ahead of the competition. The turbine stands at 220m at full height (taller than London’s Gherkin skyscraper), with 38-ton, 80m wind turbine blades. It produces peak power at around 21-25m/s winds, with a minimum cut-on wind of 4m/s.

Denmark really likes wind power. EPA/JAN KNUDSEN DENMARK OUT

Apart from generating clean energy, the turbine is also 80% recyclable at the end of its 25 year life cycle. “We are confident that the 9 MW machine has now proven that it is ready for the market and we believe that our wind turbine will play an integral part in enabling the offshore industry to continue to drive down the cost of energy,” said Torben Hvid Larsen, company CTO. In offshore wind farms alone, Denmark has over 500 turbines. Compare this to the United States which is working on it’s second ever offshore wind farm, which when completed will leave only 20 turbines operating. In total, wind accounts for over 40% of the power in Denmark.

source: MHV Vestas Offshore

David F.
A grad student in experimental physics, David is fascinated by science, space and technology. When not buried in lecture books, he enjoys movies, gaming and mountainbiking

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