Chinese engineers have unveiled a massive 16-megawatt wind turbine, powerful enough to generate and deliver clean electricity to more than 36 000 households yearly.
Jointly developed by two of the country’s most prominent industry players, the turbine’s developers claimed it is the largest ever built and that it affirms China’s position as a leader in the wind energy sector.
The first 16-megawatt wind turbine rolled off the production line at the Fujian Three Gorges Wind Power International Industrial Complex in late November 2022 and is the product of Xinjiang Goldwind Science and Technology Corporation and China Three Gorges Corporation (CTG).
Notably, news of the 16-megawatt behemoth comes in the same year both companies unveiled a 13.6-megawatt turbine.
The new stand-alone wind turbine is the product of the Chinese government’s desire to develop domestically produced, cutting-edge technologies that could match and surpass international standards in industries such as renewables, electric vehicles, space exploration, artificial intelligence and semiconductors, CTG chairman Lei Minghsan, told the media.
Sporting an impeller diameter of 252 metres, the turbine reportedly will generate 34.2 kilowatt-hours every rotation at full wind speed.
Its creators say the 66 million kilowatts of energy it produces yearly will provide enough clean electricity to power 36 000 three-person residential homes.
This would reduce coal consumption by an estimated 22 000 tons and prevent 54 000 tons of dangerous carbon dioxide from leeching into the atmosphere.
In line with China’s ambition to develop critical technologies domestically, the GWH252 16-megawatt wind turbine was manufactured with complete intellectual property rights.
Some of its key design features include ultra-long flexible blades that can tolerate sudden gusts of wind that would otherwise cause aeroelastic problems for stiffer blades.
The model could cope with a variety of weather conditions, from the typhoons that sweep through the South China Sea to the cold North Atlantic halfway across the world, said Goldwind chairman, Wu Gang.
The turbines have built-in telemetry and other sensory equipment that allow the unit to intelligently change operation modes when subjected to unfavourable weather, according to Goldwind chief engineer, Zhai Endi.
Goldwind and CTG are just two of several Chinese renewable energy firms rapidly advancing China’s position as the largest player in the industry.
In November, Recharge News reported that Zhongshan-based MingYang was developing 16-megawatt and 14-megawatt turbines for release sometime next year.
Haizhuang Wind Power is also reported to be in late-stage development with a 16.7-megawatt design for offshore wind farms.
The immense progress made by his company demonstrated how China and Chinese wind energy companies are leading the sector where previously they had been lagging, commented Lei Mingshan.