American Superconductor Corporation, a global power technologies company, and South Korea-based Hyundai Heavy Industries Co., Ltd. (Korean Stock Exchange: HHI) announced that they have expanded their strategic alliance to include the joint development of a five megawatt (MW) full conversion wind turbine primarily for use in the burgeoning offshore wind industry. Under the terms of the alliance, the five MW wind turbine design will be jointly developed by HHI and AMSC's wholly-owned AMSC Windtec(TM) subsidiary. Once HHI begins volume production of the wind turbines, which is expected to commence by the end of 2011, HHI will purchase power electronic components for the five MW wind turbines from AMSC.
In October 2008, AMSC Windtec licensed 1.65 and two MW doubly-fed induction wind turbine designs to HHI. HHI already has begun volume production of the 1.65 MW wind turbines and has ordered nearly 80 sets of electrical control systems and power electronic components from AMSC for this platform. HHI also has ordered an initial 10 wind turbine electrical control systems from AMSC for use in its first two MW wind turbines. HHI plans to commission its first two MW wind turbines by June 12, 2010 and plans to enter volume production of these wind turbines by the end of this year.
"With sales of our 1.65 MW wind turbines increasing according to plan and production of our two MW wind turbine set to begin, we are ready to add another advanced system to our renewable energy portfolio," said Keh-Sik Min, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of HHI. "While we expect our 1.65 and two MW wind turbines to be our onshore 'workhorses,' the global offshore wind market holds tremendous growth potential for HHI. We are pleased to expand our strategic alliance with AMSC and broaden our portfolio with an advanced 5 MW platform for this emerging opportunity."
Under the terms of the new development contract, HHI will have the ability to market, manufacture and sell five5 MW wind turbines globally.
"Our strategic alliance with HHI continues to grow along with the strong expansion of their global wind power business," said AMSC founder and Chief Executive Officer Greg Yurek. "Within a two-year period, HHI has formed a new wind energy division and will have brought two high-performance, megawatt-scale wind turbines to market -- a feat few have accomplished in the industry. HHI now aims to establish a leadership position in the offshore wind turbine market by combining AMSC Windtec's leading engineering expertise with its own manufacturing experience and its extensive offshore development capabilities. We are quite confident that this will prove to be a winning combination."
AMSC's wind turbine electrical control systems and electrical components include the company's proprietary PowerModule(TM) power converters, pitch and yaw converters and SCADA systems. They enable reliable, high-performance wind turbine operation by controlling power flows, regulating voltage, monitoring system performance, controlling the pitch of wind turbine blades and the yaw of the turbines to maximize efficiency.