Plan to Export Wind Turbine Transformers

Plan to Export Wind Turbine Transformers
Plan to Export Wind Turbine Transformers

Domestically-manufactured wind turbine transformers are being mass produced and plans are in place to export them to neighboring states, the managing director of Iran Transfo Corporation said.

"The country had to annually spend $50 million on importing transformers in the past, while we are planning to export the high-tech electrical device in the near future," Arsalan Fathipour was also quoted as saying by ILNA on Saturday.

According to Fathipour, who is also a member of Iran Electricity Industry Syndicate, Iraq, Armenia, Belarus and Kyrgyzstan are among potential regional markets where the device will be sold.

Pointing to the quality of the indigenized equipment, he noted that not only does the product comply with international standards, but it also enjoys advantages, one of which is lower levels of top oil temperature-rise as well as average winding temperature-rise.

"Each transformer will cost about $4 million," he said.

A transformer acts as a link between wind turbines and distribution grid, stepping up the low output voltage from the generator to higher distribution voltage level.

The official noted that the transformer has a unique feature as it can be installed both on the tower of a turbine and the nacelle, a cover housing all of the generating components in a wind turbine, including the generator, gearbox, drive train and brake assembly.

"The first domestically-manufactured transformer will be installed at the Bandar Abbas plant in Hormozgan Province in the near future," he said.

Established in 1967 under the license of Germany's Siemens, Iran Transfo Corporation is the top manufacturer of oil-immersed distribution and power transformers. It comprises 13 companies that closely collaborate with more than 100 domestic and foreign subcontractors for manufacturing all kinds of substations, insulation materials, ceramic insulators and accessories such as radiators.

Pointing to the country's power industry priorities, Fathipour said electricity generation from alternative resources, namely wind farm, tops the agenda and the new device can play a key role in developing Iran's expanding wind turbine industry.

  Domestic Equipment

According to the Renewable Energy Organization of Iran (SUNA), although previously Iran imported wind turbines from western countries, currently a large proportion of wind turbine equipment is produced domestically.

Besides meeting domestic demand, grounds have been prepared to export turbines, which will help prevent the outflow of hard currency and generate revenues from non-oil exports.

"Our engineers can now produce 660 kilowatt wind turbines," SUNA stated, adding that the Energy Ministry's research center is in cooperation with Iran Power Generation Transmission & Distribution Management Company for the manufacture of 2-megawatt wind turbines.

In its latest report, the International Energy Agency said the global wind turbine blade market was valued at nearly $1 billion in 2013 and it is projected to reach a value of $16.98 billion by 2019 from an estimated $10.9 billion in 2014 with a compound annual growth rate of 9.2% for forecast period.

Rising electricity demand, government support and declining costs of wind power generation are major drivers for this market. The most commonly used turbines in the past had a capacity of 1.5-2.5 MW, for which the blade length varied between 38-50 meters.


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