Lowering major operating costs and streamlining operations has been a key goal for the maturing wind industry in the United States.
Gearboxes and generators are among the most costly and disruptive failed parts in wind turbines currently. To improve this situation, E.ON Energy Services turned to Liftra to find a new solution to a growing problem.
Liftra has developed a new technology, the Liftra Crane, which will dramatically lower the total costs to change out gearboxes and generators for certain turbines. E.ON Energy Services has purchased this technology from Liftra and will offer it as part of a new service offering to customers in the North American market. The Liftra Crane replaces a traditional crane for gearbox and generator repairs, and has the potential to be a game changer in the wind turbine operations and maintenance space.
“The Liftra technology can help lower the total repair costs by 20 to 30 percent,” E.ON Energy Services vice president Guy Dees said. “This technology replaces a traditional crane, has easier mobility, and can operate in harsher wind conditions. This has tremendous potential to lower costs and we are excited to offer this as a service to our growing customer base,” Dees added.
“Doing business with E.ON was a natural fit for us,” Liftra CEO Per Fenger said. “E.ON is an international player in the renewables business and working with them to bring this to customers in the North American market made sense for both companies.”
The Liftra technology is currently applicable on the General Electric 1.5, the Vestas V82 and Siemens 2.3 platforms.
“E.ON believes in pushing the development of new technologies to increase safety, reduce operating costs and increase performance whenever possible. With our Owner’s Eye approach, we intend to test the Liftra Crane on our own fleet initially and offer it to customers later this year,” E.ON Energy Services president Keith Day said. “Once proven out, this could have wide reaching benefit to the industry especially sites in the most remote areas.”
E.ON is one of the world’s largest investor-owned power and gas companies, with annual sales of €112 billion and more than 58,000 employees. E.ON, headquartered in Dusseldorf, Germany, plays a leading role in the development of the renewable industry worldwide and is already active in onshore and offshore wind, photovoltaic, and concentrating solar power (CSP). E.ON currently operates over 10 gigawatt of renewable capacity including large hydro. Since 2007, E.ON has already invested more than €9.5 billion and will continue to expand the share of renewable energy in E.ON’s power generation portfolio. It is E.ON’s ambition to further industrialize the sector and professionalize its operations, in order to reduce the cost of renewable generation and make it ever more competitive. To this end, E.ON works with a wide range of partners and is always open to discuss potential cooperation with committed technical experts and financial investors alike.
Liftra is a leading developer and provider of lifting and transport solutions and services to the wind energy sector. Liftra continually sets new standards in lifting, transporting and servicing of major components, with technologies that can lower the cost of wind energy and yet improve the quality and safety of operations. Liftra’s has headquarters in Denmark and branch offices in the USA, China and Spain.