400 jobs to be created in new Mitsubishi-Vestas wind turbines joint venture


Dr. Win Rampen, Managing Director, Artemis Intelligent Power
Dr. Win Rampen, Managing Director, Artemis Intelligent Power

Up to 400 jobs are to be created in a new joint venture by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) and Vestas Wind Systems, which will be dedicated to the offshore wind turbines business.

They will each hold a 50-50 stake in the joint venture, which is due to be formally announced in April 2014.

The JV plans include an early market launch of a turbine based on the Vestas V164 platform and incorporating Mitsubishi’s new hydraulic drivetrain – the world’s first Digital Displacement® Transmission (DDT).

Mitsubishi is currently commissioning a prototype 7 MW DDT for the SeaAngel wind-turbine. This first system will be shipped from Yokohama to its new Hunterston test site for offshore technologies, near Largs, whilst a second transmission is prepared for a floating wind-turbine offshore of Fukushima in Japan.

Delivery of the prototype Mitsubishi SeaAngel turbine at Hunterston is due to take place in May 2014.

MHI’s recently-acquired subsidiary, Artemis Intelligent Power, based near Edinburgh, has designed and manufactured valves, electronics and control software for both machines in the UK and continues to play a major role in the commissioning work in Japan.

Artemis Intelligent Power was created at Edinburgh University in 1994 by Dr. Win Rampen and Professor Stephen Salter.

Meanwhile, the developers of two major wind farms in Scotland will announce their shortlists of two final turbine manufacturers by the end of next month (February).

In the case of the EDP Renewables/ Repsol Moray Firth wind development, it will announce its two preferred turbine suppliers on 14 February while the Inch Cape joint venture will do likewise ‘by the end of February’.

When confirmed, these developments will trigger capital investment of between £2-£4 billion in commercial contracts for hundreds of wind turbines from the selected manufacturers, many of whom were in attendance at this week’s Offshore Wind conference and exhibition.

Among those taking part in a ‘speed-dating’ session at Offshore Wind to showcase their current and  forthcoming wind turbines were:

  • David Matthews, Head of Sales, Areva, UK
  • David Blunt, Managing Director, Gamesa UK,
  • Peter Clusky, Head of Government Relations  for Mitsibushi Heavy Industries, and
  • Richard Copeland (Repsol) and Kate Potter (SSE Renewables).

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