A 2.7 MW onshore wind turbine, the ECO 122, that combines high power and a high capacity factor, has been launched by Alstom to boost energy yield in low wind regions worldwide. At a wind speed of 7.5 m/s the turbine delivers a net wind farm capacity factor of up to 42%, equivalent to 3,600 full load hours each year.

Its 122 metre rotor diameter and swept area of 11,700 m2, the largest in the 2.0 MW to 3.0 MW turbine segment, maximise the harvest of energy. The ECO 122 produces about 25% increased wind farm yield on a given piece of land compared with today’s 1.5 – 2.0 MW turbines, and fewer turbines need to be installed. As an example, on a typical low wind site, six current generation 1.5 – 2.0 MW turbines will produce about 40 GWh/year, compared with more than 50 GWh/year with only five ECO 122 turbines.

An ECO 122 powered wind farm can reduce balance of plant costs by 10% to 15%, compared with a farm using typical 1.5 – 2.0 MW machines, due to fewer foundations, platforms and roads, and less cabling.

The ECO 122 is the latest evolution of Alstom’s ECO 100 turbine platform, which now has more than 350 MW installed or under construction worldwide and over 200,000 cumulative operating hours since 2008. The first ECO 122 will be installed in mid 2012 with first commercial deliveries expected in early 2013.

Alstom designs, assembles and installs a range of onshore wind turbines spanning 1.67 MW to 3.0 MW and is producing a 6.0 MW new generation offshore turbine.


Read more articles from ESI Africa magazine edition 4 2011