Bigger IS Better—At Least When it Comes to Wind Turbines
While the cost of wind power has been falling over the last five years, the size of wind turbines has only increased—and in September 2017, GE premiered its largest wind turbine to date—the 4.8-158. Not only is the new 4.8-158 turbine’s rotor the diameter of more than one-and-a-half American football fields, each of its blade is as long as the entire wingspan of a Boeing 747. To walk from the end of one wind turbine blade to the other would take the average human two minutes. Now that’s a big blade.
And the wind turbine size evolution will only continue, as companies like GE seek to make wind turbines that can create more energy, and thus power more homes. As the world turns towards wind energy, developers are looking at land that traditionally hasn’t been seen as ideal for wind power. “The good wind sites have been taken,” remarks GE project manager Minesh Shah. “Getting as much energy from one turbine as you can is important.”
The GE 4.8-158 isn’t just the company’s largest wind turbine—it’s one of the world’s largest onshore wind turbines . Each unit is powerful enough to provide electricity for 5,000 European homes, and best of all, it’s quieter than previous turbines. In addition to being one of the biggest onshore wind turbines, it will have a longer lifespan than its predecessors—“We’re designing for a 25-year life,” says Shah. And with predictive digital capabilities powered by Predix, operators of the new wind turbines can expect to pay around 15% less in maintenance costs. So not only is bigger better, it’s more practical, too.
Learn more about GE Renewable Energy’s 4.8-158 onshore wind turbine by contacting our team today.
Read the full story at GE Reports.