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Goldwind eyes mass production of 6MW turbines in three years
[BEIJING] Xinjiang Goldwind Science & Technology Co, the biggest seller of wind turbines in China, is likely in about three years to begin mass producing a 6-megawatt turbine model designed for coastal wind power projects.
The company is still testing the operation of the larger turbine in Dafeng in China's eastern province of Jiangsu and is expected to roll out a second generation model at the end of the year, Wu Kai, general manager of Goldwind's research and development center, said in an interview in Beijing.
Goldwind's push in offshore wind underscores the ambitions of a company that emerged last year as a world leader in turbine technology and one of China's few companies with a global footprint. The focus on large turbines places Goldwind firmly at the most challenging end of the market.
Urumqi, Xinjiang-based Goldwind has adopted an attitude of "active preparation but cautious implementation" for offshore wind, said Mr Wu, pointing to the risks and technical difficulties associated with the market.
At the end of 2015, China had about 900 megawatts of offshore wind capacity, far less than the 5,000 megawatts previously targeted, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Offshore turbines represented a fraction of China's 129 gigawatts of land-based wind turbines last year, according to data from the National Energy Administration.
Most of China's coastal wind projects are currently near the shore, said Zhou Yiyi, a Shanghai-based analyst at Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
Development of the domestic offshore wind market is set to advance this year as some projects are completed, said Goldwind's Mr Wu.
Indeed, total offshore wind capacity in China may more than double this year from 2015, BNEF forecasts.
Goldwind is also upgrading its onshore products, said Mr Wu. The growth of the company's 2-megawatt land-based turbines is currently advancing as developers seek to build more new projects in the south to avoid grid congestion, he said.