SAKANA will produce hubs for SIEMENS` 6 MW wind turbines

SAKANA will produce hubs for SIEMENS` 6 MW wind turbines

The cooperative Sakana, located in the region Navarra, will be the reference manufacturer of the hub and shaft castings of the new 6 MW wind turbines of SIEMENS for the period 2013-14, after the agreement reached in Hamburg between the representatives of both companies.

This agreement will be developed within the next twelve months and successfully completes the negotiation process held by both companies in recent months, including the manufacture of four 50 MT hubs that have been subjected to rigorous analysis and quality checking .

“We are proud to contribute to Siemens` 6-MW wind turbines with our products. This order proves that we have the right technological capabilities, solutions and level of competence which our customers can trust in”, said members of the technical staff of SAKANA. SAKANA will cast hubs and shafts for SIEMENS to assemble in the 6 MW direct drive wind turbines intended for the large-scale offshore wind power plants of the future.

The hub is the spherical piece that supports the three blades and transfers the power captured from the wind to the elements that convert the mechanical energy into electricity.

It is the most singular casting made so far by SAKANA, both for its weight (50 MT) and its size (diameter of 5 meters) and probably the largest piece manufactured for the wind energy sector in Spain and eligible only by a very small number of foundries in Europe.

SAKANA, composed by 102 associated workers and 70 employees, has an experience of 20 years as a supplier of the most important companies in the wind energy sector and after significant investments in recent years, has positioned itself in this small club of melters of big technical parts. Between 2002 and 2004 the machinery and facilities of the first foundry building were modernized and in 2008 a new plant of 160 meters long and 23 meters high was built and equipped with modern furnaces and systems which are able to deal with parts up to 60 tons.

Simultaneously, and as a strategic commitment to increase the competitiveness and value of their services, two new activities were integrated into its industrial perimeter: a modern machine shop, LAKBER, S.L. in alliance with the machine tool manufacturer SORALUCE, S.L. and a paint shop, GOILAK, S.L. shared with a local partner.

The total investment, which has risen up to 65 million euros, enables SAKANA to offer machined and painted castings, ready to be installed by its customers in the fields of renewable energy, machine tool industry and marine engine manufacturers.

SAKANA achieved in 2012 a turnover of 50 million euros; 75% of the sales occurred in the external market, and counts among its customers companies that are world leaders in their activities such as ACCIONA, FAGOR, GAMESA, GENERAL ELECTRIC, HELLER, HERKULES-WALDRICH, HOWDEN THOMASSEN COMPRESSORS, JUARISTI, ROLLS ROYCE, SIEMENS, SORALUCE, WÄRTSILÄ or WEIR.

Offshore, the great European bet

Europe accumulates 86% of the global offshore wind generating projects, which will be materialized in the coming years. Altogether they will be equivalent to raising facilities that will add an installed capacity of 95 GW, according to Danish consulting company BTM.

The first offshore wind farm was built in 1991 by Bonus Energy (now SIEMENS) in Vindeby (Denmark). It consisted of 11 turbines of 450 kW. Two decades later, just one of the new SIEMENS wind generators will widely exceed the capacity of the Vindeby farm. However, offshore still means a symbolic contribution (1,6%) to the global wind power generation, according to BTM.

The sector is leaded by United Kingdom (more than 2GW of installed capacity), followed by Denmark (830 MW) and the Netherlands (250 MW). Germany and China began to build farms in 2009.Between January and October 2012 1.31 GW of power were installed in the world and wind farms were built in Belgium, Germany, Denmark, UK, China, South Korea and Japan, reaching together 100 GW.

The Danish consulting company BTM, whose annual reports have become referent documents for the status of the renewable energy market, estimates that the offshore sector will reach an annual potential growth of 15.6% in the period 2017-2021.

Source: SAKANA

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