GE Global Research has begun the first phase of a two-year $3m project from the US Department of Energy to develop a generator for a 10–15 MW wind turbine.
Researchers at GE Global Research, the technology development arm of General Electric Company, will apply superconducting magnet technology developed for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in healthcare to cutting the cost of wind generation.
“For MRI systems, we’re applying superconducting magnets to make lower cost systems with higher image quality,” said Keith Longtin, Wind Technology Leader at GE Global Research.
“For wind turbines, we want to apply them to generate more wind power at lower cost of electricity. The applications are different, but the basic technology is the same.”
The world’s highest capacity turbine is currently Enercon’s 7 MW E-126. Several companies are now planning offshore wind turbines of a similar capacity – including Vestas’s 7 MW V164 – but Clipper recently announced it was scrapping a project to build a 10 MW offshore wind turbine in the UK
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