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Because turbines for offshore wind farms have high construction and operating costs as well as difficult maintenance conditions, they require high reliability and output per unit.
Along to serve towards low-carbon society, the number of solar and wind power plants are increasing due to the introduction of buy back scheme with a fixed purchase price. Surrounded by the sea, offshore wind power generation are expected to grown rapidly due to the advantage of the relatively fewer constraints, including on visual impact, noise, and acquiring sites. Hitachi has now completed it's' first HTW5.0-126 turbine construction, whose design has been optimized for offshore wind farms which are expected to have larger turbine installations in the future. The HTW5.0-126 turbine offers a rated output of 5 MW, approximately 2.5 times greater than the existing 2-MW wind turbine, and its 126-m rotor diameter is approximately 1.5 times larger. The turbine adopts Hitachi's original downwind configuration, which places the rotor on the downwind side. This reduces wind loads and allows the rotor to stay oriented to tolerance with the crosswinds even during strong gusts. It also features improved reliability with a lighter and compact overall design through the combination of a newly developed permanent magnet synchronous motor and a medium-speed step-up gear. These features are intended to improve safety while reducing the cost of installing the seabed foundations or floating platforms. Hitachi plans to begin commercial operation at Fukashiba wind power station in Kashima in the summer of 2015 after commissioning and the testing and evaluation of the power curve*.