There is a paradigm shift towards renewable sources of energy across the globe. Many countries are adding renewable energy capacity into their total energy mix. Many renewable projects are planned across the globe. Wind energy is one of the many renewable sources of energy. Wind energy is currently one of the most mature renewable energy technologies in operation.
The wind energy industry has witnessed rapid development in the past decade and large economies of scale have already been achieved by the major market players. As the technology develops and the concentration of suppliers in a market increases, the overall competitive scenario of the wind energy market is likely to increase.
Various linked businesses in the wind energy sector have opened up in the recent past. One of the highly attractive and emerging businesses in wind energy industry is that of wind turbine inspection services. As a business, wind turbine inspection services are gaining increasing momentum mainly on account of aggressive capacity additions taking place across the world. The turbine is the most crucial component of a wind energy generation system, and certainly the most expensive. The wind turbines isn’t a single component in itself, but is comprised of numerous smaller components such as the gearbox and generator system. As a result large wind farm contractors and operators are increasingly opting for wind turbine inspection services at regular intervals to effectively safeguard themselves against unplanned maintenances. Being highly dependent on capacity utilization factors, unplanned maintenances may result in operators incurring significant losses due to the downtime. Wind turbines are complex machines which are made to function in an even more complex environment.
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The gearbox, generator package, and rotor blades are some of the major components in any turbine which are prone to breaking down. The wind turbine inspection services efficiently target these particular components and ensure that the entirety of the turbine is in perfect working order at all times. One of the major focus areas for wind turbine inspection services are the maintenance and servicing of gearboxes. It is well known that gearboxes owing to their complex nature and multiple moving parts are the most prone to breakdowns. With regular maintenance and performance checks, wind turbine inspection services can ensure that these expensive components have a longer operational life. The wind turbine inspection services are gradually emerging as a strategic value added service for any wind farm owner or operator, and the sector is likely to show exponential growth rates in the future. Until now, nations across the world have employed highly lucrative incentive regimes such as feed-in-tariffs in order to promote the adoption of wind energy in their respective jurisdictions. However as the subsidy bills of respective governments pile up, a retraction of these subsidy and incentive schemes are likely to be observed. Feed-in-tariff schemes may be gradually replaced with feed-in-premium mechanisms. Growth of wind energy industry will directly boost the market for wind turbine inspection services.
The global wind turbine inspection services market is segmented on the basis of type of defects and geography. The main types of wind turbine defects include external pollution, overload defects, mechanical defects, phase defects, insulation defects and others. The European and North American wind energy markets are relatively mature in nature. Retraction of incentive schemes has hit the annual installation market of the U.S. while Europe is faltering in general owing to its economic slowdown. The Asia-Pacific is likely to be an attractive market displaying steady growth rates for wind turbine inspection services. Other attractive markets include Middle East & Africa and South & Central America. For offshore wind turbine inspection services, the majority of demand is likely to be generated by Europe which has aggressively targeted offshore wind energy development. In the Asia Pacific region China is likely to spearhead the development of the offshore wind energy sector and trigger significant demand for wind turbine inspection services. The U.S. was initially slow to enter the offshore wind energy market; however installations are likely to pick up in the future. Overall with the wind energy installed capacity expected to double from current levels by 2023, the wind turbine inspection services is likely to show exceptional growth rates.
Some of the key players in the global wind turbine inspection services market include Technical Wind Services Ltd., Intertek Group Plc., Cenergy International Services LLC, UpWind Solutions Inc., INVISO Services Ltd., Advanced Cleaning Technology Ltd., ASC Engineering Service, MFG Energy Services, Midwest Underground Technology Inc., MISTRAS Group Inc., and UL International GmbH among others.