Providing the most predictable return on your investment
Our expertise involves more than just delivering wind turbines. We cover the entire life cycle of a wind power plant, minimizing our customers’ risks and increasing their returns. We work as a strategic business partner helping our customers from the moment they decide to invest in wind until long after the wind power plant has been commissioned.
Wind Project Planning
Financing. Siting. Grid requirements. Local policy and regulations. You need to consider a wide range of crucial factors when you invest in a wind power plant. And not just at the planning stage, but for the whole lifecycle of the project.
One of the first steps in planning a wind power plant is to obtain financing for the project.
When banks consider the financing of a wind power project, they tend to focus on the underlying credit-worthiness of the project participants. That’s why it’s smart to choose Vestas. We’re a global organisation built on more than 30 years’ experience in the wind industry, with more than 51,000 turbines installed worldwide. In the eyes of lenders and investors, that makes us a reliable and trustworthy partner for your wind power project. We can contribute to the success of your financing by providing business case certainty through our proven technology and product reliability.
Banks prefer wind turbine suppliers that have a strong financial platform, as they look at how the supplier will meet potential warranty problems and honour availability guarantees. Again, partnering with Vestas will be a benefit. Although we do not offer financing ourselves, we can capitalise on our long-standing relationships with banks to help you bridge any potential ‘finance gap.' For instance, in the case of multilateral finance, we have a strong track record of working with EKF, the Danish Export Credit Agency, to facilitate insurance cover and finance for wind power projects.
Securing project finance
Project finance is expected to become increasingly important for bigger wind power projects. In today’s economic climate, banks and investors care about the return on their investment, as well as its certainty over the typical 20-year investment lifespan of a wind power plant. To guard against uncertainty, the financing of a project often depends on the turbine.
supplier offering schemes and committed services that add comfort and security during both the construction and operation phases of the project.
In the case of the construction phase, project finance can depend on the turbine supplier accepting turnkey responsibility. This is something that Vestas can take on. We can ensure that quality is consistent throughout delivery, thanks to our long-established relationships with reliable sub-contractors. And when it comes to the operation phase, we offer the high quality service and availability agreements, for example AOM 4000. These offerings provide a significant contribution to the bank's requirements for protection against downside risks, and strongly support creating business case certainty for investors.
It’s a solid combination of benefits that make Vestas the ideal partner for easing the finance process for a wind power project.
2. Grid Compliance
Support for grid code compliance
Grid codes specify the electrical performance and documentation that a wind power plant needs to gain connection to a grid. Demonstrating grid code compliance and achieving a grid connection agreement are therefore essential milestones in the development of a wind power plant project. This is where Vestas comes in.
How can Vestas help you connect to the grid?
We provide support in assessing and optimising the overall electrical configuration and performance of a wind power plant, so that the increasingly challenging requirements of grid connection are met.
We perform feasibility and transmission system impact studies, and we support the transmission system operators (TSO) with regards to grid connection agreements. We can also design and procure the most appropriate plant and grid connection equipment.
We have a strong track record with extensive experience in:
- Developing and verifying power system simulation models for system impact studies
- Validating stationary and dynamic performance on site
- Designing wind power plant electrical infrastructure
- Early prediction of performance and grid code compliance
- Plant solutions involving advanced dynamic reactive power compensation solutions, and connection to weak networks
- Grid code compliance testing
How is wind energy integrated in the grid?
Wind energy represents the most competitive renewable energy source and many countries have set ambitious targets for wind energy.
Renewable energy sources, like wind energy, create new challenges for electricity systems in terms of planning and operation. In addition, many transmission systems were constructed back in the 1970s and require substantial, technical updates and expansion to cope with the increasing percentage of renewable energy.
Vestas works actively to improve conditions related to system integration of wind energy. The aim is to ensure a grid well-suited for a non-fossil fuel future. Standardisation of grid codes, procedures, certification and documentation are examples of our efforts in this field.
Our knowledge and practical insights in procurement and supply chain management have been built up over three decades at the forefront of wind energy. We run our own test centres where our turbines are put through the most rigorous checks and tests, and we continuously capture the performance data from about 25,000 Vestas turbines around the world, helping us refine our development process for new and existing turbines, wherever the location and whatever the wind conditions.
1. Technology R&D
The complexity of wind turbines has increased dramatically in recent years. As one of the front runners in the race for technological advancement, Vestas recognizes the importance of advancing our product development while at the same time continuing our rigorous focus on product reliability.
At Vestas, our research is state-of-the-art. We’re continuously looking for better solutions and materials that will bring even more value to our customers and lower the cost of energy, both today and in the future.
We are committed to the rigorous testing of all our products and components, and all our test centres are at the leading edge of wind turbine technology. It’s here that we put our turbine components through the most rigorous testing processes, pushing them beyond their specification. In this way, we can identify and address any weaknesses before the product enters the market. We test components and systems as well as the whole product.
One such process is called Highly Accelerated Life Testing (HALT). During this process, components are put through stress tests like extreme fluctuations in temperatures combined with heavy vibrations.
this? By identifying the critical processes for standardised production and carefully monitoring quality controls.
- We use Six Sigma performance targets to ensure each component precisely matches designs.
- We scrutinise each stage of the production process at component, platform, factory and process level.
- We monitor Critical to Quality (CTQ) charts to identify any unacceptable variations and make corrections before defects occur.
Standardisation – control equals confidence
Our components operate to the highest performance standards for their entire 20-year design specification. How do we achieve this? We regulate and oversee all the processes during their manufacture. By closely monitoring the entire production chain we achieve two main objectives:
- We ensure each component lasts as long as it should and performs at its maximum potential.
- We increase the business case certainty for investors by avoiding unplanned failures and meeting performance expectations.
By maximising the number of critical processes under our control and minimising the variance between end products – in other words, producing components according to exact design specifications– we ensure high quality end products, time after time.
You need to consider a large number of factors when operating a wind farm. It has to be serviced, it has to be managed effectively to get the most out of the turbines, you have to train people to operate it, and it has to be insured. We can help with all these issues, and more.
Prediction and prevention are the two cornerstones of our power plant optimisation services. We use cutting edge predictive and preventive maintenance techniques to identify potential problems before they arise – and then we take action to address them.
By using predictive and preventive maintenance techniques, we can identify potential problems before they occur and take action to address them, helping to reduce down time and optimise the yield for Vestas turbines worldwide.
Monitoring a fleet of more than 25,500 wind turbines (more than 47 GW) enables us to provide diagnostics-based predictive performance maintenance. In short, we can see problems before they affect a turbine’s performance and take preventative steps accordingly. When monitoring one turbine, data from all other wind turbines is used. This provides unique insights into how the turbine operates.
Our structured quality-orientated, Six Sigma problem-solving process is run from one central performance diagnostics centre in Denmark, and from local centres all over the world, including Hamburg and Beijing.
To the benefit of our customers, when we come out to a turbine to perform service or maintenance we come prepared with the necessary knowledge, tools and equipment. For example if a crane or particular piece of equipment is needed, we can order it in advance, minimising lead time waiting for delivery. By planning service visits during predicted low wind conditions, we can help to optimise the turbines’ yield.
Vestas uses smart data throughout its value chain, from product design and testing, siting, manufacturing to service and maintenance – all enabling our customers to lower their cost of energy, increase annual energy production and improve their business case certainty.
We have collected, analysed and utilised data from Vestas wind turbines since 1991 in to improve every aspect of the business, including product development, siting, services, and operations. Vestas took a big leap forward beginning in the mid-2000s, with major investments in our supercomputing analytics capabilities that included establishing the Vestas Diagnostics and Performance Centre in 2006, introducing the Firestorm supercomputer in 2011, and continuing today integrating an even more powerful new supercomputer.
These investments have contributed to creating the highly data-driven business we are today with an unmatched ability in the wind industry to create and utilise smart data to lower the cost of energy.
Vestas has the wind industry’s largest data library that builds on almost 75 GW of turbines we have installed in 75 countries. This unrivalled data pool includes more than 16 years of meteorological data from all over the world as well as information from 50 million sensors that send us turbine performance data every minute.
Every day, Vestas’ smart data capabilities help our customers lower their cost of energy, increase their annual energy production and improve their business case certainty.
1. Product design and testing.
At Vestas, product design and development utilise virtual simulation based on data to determine how our products react and perform in different conditions. This enables us to design and test our products in real-life environments before production and thus design better products and achieve our industry-leading quality, service offerings and 20+ years lifecycle.
Unique to the industry, Vestas can create visual weather maps to determine the best possible locations for the turbines; match them to the most appropriate turbine from our product portfolio, which covers all wind classes; and thus deliver the best wind energy solution for any site.
Standardising work processes across factories helps to optimise production and ensure product quality through critical-to-quality metrics (CTQs).
Vestas’ smart data capabilities enable us to react instantly when witnessing any abnormalities, and power our predictive maintenance where we more accurately than anyone in the industry can forecast and mitigate the likelihood of major component failure before it happens. With smart data we move from preventive to predictive maintenance.