In South Africa, the Gouda Wind Farm in the Western Cape Province has been put into commercial operation by a consortium led by Spanish company ACCIONA Energy, in partnership with local construction firm Aveng.
The wind farm consists of forty-six 3MW AW100/3000 turbines with a generation capacity of 138MW.
According to the renewable power solutions company, the plant is estimated to produce an average of 423 GWh per annum, enough power to supply 200,000 average South African households.
ACCIONA Energy South African CEO Rafael Esteban said: “The completion of the Gouda Wind Farm demonstrates our commitment to the development of a sustainable renewable energy sector in South Africa.”
Gouda Wind Farm
The consortium, which is led by ACCIONA Energy (51% of the capital) and the South African infrastructure firm Aveng (29%), includes Soul City Broad-Based Empowerment Company (SCBBEC) and a community development entity (Local Community Trust), which both have a 10% stake in the project.
The joint venture is committed to managing the operation and maintenance of the Gouda Wind Farm facility for the duration of its 20-year lifespan.
The clean power facility will avoid emitting an estimated 406 million metric tons of CO2 per year, which is the norm emitted by coal-fired power plants.
Wind turbine technology
The wind turbines, which are manufactured by the Spanish Company, have a rotor diameter of 100 meters and the turbines are mounted on 100-meter-high concrete towers.
The wind turbines are designed to generate at 12,000 volts compared to 690 volts, which ACCIONA claims is more common for other manufacturers.
Esteban concluded: “[…] we have developed a concrete tower technology for sites where it is important to reach the highest possible hub heights and optimise wind power generation.”
ACCIONA said in a company statement: “These turbines are unique in that medium-voltage generation (12 kV) has been extensively deployed by ACCIONA Windpower.
"In cases where the wind turbines are close to the substation, the main advantages of this technology is the elimination of transformers and a reduction in power losses.”
Home page pic credit: ACCIONA Energy