News Release from GE Energy Power Conversion GmbH


Wind Industry Profile of

Converteam Confirmed as Leader in Advanced Test Facilities for Large Offshore Wind Turbines

Berlin / Rugby, September 2, 2011 – Power conversion specialist Converteam has announced that it has been selected for the development of a number of testing facilities for the rapidly expanding global wind industry. The state of the art facilities are under development by customers worldwide.

In the UK Converteam has been contracted as technical leader for a wind turbine testing centre in Blyth at the National Renewable Energy Centre (Narec), the UK’s leading centre for advancing the development and integration of renewable energy through technology-led innovation.

The Energy Technologies Institute (ETI), a public-private partnership between global industries and the UK Government, is investing £25m in the facility. Due to open in 2013, the Narec facility will be the largest open access test facility in the UK.

Converteam, as the technical leader, will also provide critical equipment including a 15 megawatt, 10 rpm direct drive permanent magnet motor together with an advanced MV7000 variable speed drive unit. The system will provide for the comprehensive testing of complete wind turbine drive trains and nacelles of up to 15 megawatt.

Converteam’s partner in the project, MTS Systems Ltd., will deliver the primary mechanical elements of the test bench including their advanced Force Application System.

ETI’s Chief Executive Dr David Clarke said: “This is a world leading engineering project that will benefit manufacturers, consumers and the UK economy as a whole by helping to increase the reliability and reduce the costs of generating electricity from offshore wind. This is a major step in establishing the UK as a leader in the wind turbine industry and we are very pleased to have contracted Converteam as technical leader, with their pedigree of providing complex test rigs worldwide over a number of years.”

In the US market Renk Test System GmbH, a supplier of wind turbine test facilities has selected Converteam to supply its proven drive systems for a wind turbine test facility in South Carolina. Renk will equip the facility, capable of full-scale non-torque-load application for highly accelerated testing of advanced complete nacelles for wind turbines which will comprise two dedicated test stands; one for testing systems up to 7.5 megawatts and the other for systems in the 7.5 to 15 megawatt range.

Converteam’s MV7000 medium voltage drive has again been selected for the project. The MV7000 is ideally suited to such an environment; it is designed to provide rapid dynamic response while minimizing harmonic distortion in the mains supply.

In a further recent award Converteam has been contracted to supply, on a turnkey basis, two test facilities for a leading global wind turbine manufacturer. The facilities, also featuring gearless direct drives with permanent magnet motors, will be able to test wind turbines with a peak power of more than 20 megawatt.

Alex Martayan, Chief Marketing Officer at Converteam expressed his satisfaction with the latest string of contract awards: “These new test centres are truly world class and they will provide wind turbine manufacturers with a cost effective means of proving and improving their products prior to deploying them. More and more turbines are deployed in the unforgiving offshore environment where intervention is costly and the overall profitability calls for more reliable and larger turbines. Highly Accelerated Life Tests (HALT) dramatically accelerates the introduction of new turbines and also reduces the risk for investors. As a leading supplier of wind turbine power converters and generators Converteam is extremely well placed to advise on the technical characteristics of such test facilities.”

About Converteam in the Industry market
As a power conversion specialist, Converteam is a leading supplier for the metals, mining, material handling and test bench industries for the most advanced and innovative electrical solutions combining motors, variable speed drives and automation & process control. Converteam strong intimacy with customers’ processes allows the development of tailored automation solutions to achieve unique performances like the fastest tinning process, the deepest hoist mine winders, the most advanced container cranes, the latest generation of super-heavy-lift cranes for offshore wind turbine installation or the largest wind turbine test bench.

About Converteam
The Converteam Group is a world leader in power conversion engineering. Building on over a century of experience, it is firmly placed at the leading edge of technology and innovation with a global reputation for excellence in the conversion of electrical energy. Converteam develops and provides solutions built around three core components: electrical machines, variable speed drives, automation and process control. It serves specialized sectors as well as its six core markets in Renewables, Power Generation, Oil & Gas and Offshore, Marine, Industry and Services. With over 5,500 staff members in 17 countries, Converteam Group provides power conversion solutions worldwide in over 80 countries. In 2010 sales totaled €1,093m with a year-end Order Backlog of €1,183m.

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