Energy & Power
New Vestas tower promises increased power production in low winds
By Anthony Capkun
March 8, 2014 – Vestas has launched the Large Diameter Steel Tower (LDST), saying it is a cost-effective solution to increase tower height for 3MW turbines to over 140m. The solution promises to boost annual energy production on low wind sites by up to 8%.
The LDST enables taller towers that take advantage of stronger wind conditions at higher hub heights for the V117-3.3MW and V126-3.3MW turbines. On a typical site with a mean wind speed of 6.5m/s, the LDST will increase annual energy production by up to 8% at a hub height of 137m for the V126-3.3MW, compared to a hub height of 117m for the conventional steel tower. Increasing the tower heights increases the force exerted by the wind on the base of the tower, explains Vestas, and this typically requires the use of thicker steel plates. Instead, the LDST increases the diameter of the bottom section, thereby increasing strength while using little extra steel, says the company, and reducing production costs and ensuring lower cost of energy. In terms of the transportation challenge, Vestas delivers the bottom tower section in three lengthway segments that are reassembled onsite using vertical flanges.