At the beginning of the year two new projects with Nordex turbines started operation in the United States: “Thunder Spirit” in North Dakota with 43 N100/2500 turbines and “Fair Wind” in Maryland with 12 WTGs of the same type. Shortly prior to this the American administration approved the extension of the Production Tax Credit (PTC) – a decision that offers Nordex good opportunities in the future in the second largest wind market in the world, where the company holds a market share of around 7 percent following the merger with Acciona Windpower.
The “Thunder Spirit” project belongs to Montana Dakota Utilities and was developed by Allete Clean Energy with early influence from Wind Works Power Corp. With a nominal capacity of 107.5 MW the wind farm will produce some 430 GWh of electricity a year and is able to supply around 31,000 American households in the region with electricity.
As “Thunder Spirit” was planned within the period in which the PTC extension was still pending, Nordex supplied some of the components well before construction work started (“safe harbouring”). This enabled the manufacturer to ensure that the customer qualified for the PTC of 2.3 US cents per kWh. Nordex coordinated the logistics for several components via various transport routes so that they were delivered punctually for the start of construction work at the site in North Dakota, with the result that “Thunder Spirit” went on grid without delays. “Allete Clean Energy was pleased with Nordex’s execution,” says Wells McGiffert, Manager Project Development for Allete Clean Energy.
Nordex set up the “Fair Wind” wind farm for Exelon, the United States leading competitive energy provider, with more than 32,700 megawatts of owned capacity comprising one of the nation’s cleanest and lowest-cost power generation fleets. With a good capacity factor for this wind regime, the N100/2500 turbines perform well at this site. Nordex is providing Premium service for this wind farm.
Following a period of uncertainty, the government’s decision on the PTC considerably strengthened the American wind market. Given this backdrop Nordex sees great potential in the United States due to its extended product portfolio which now includes the turbines from Acciona Windpower. In particular, there is great enthusiasm for the AW3000 and Delta generation products.
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