The last decade has seen a steady rise in the demand for used wind turbines. Driven principally by the availability of low cost, aging assets from first-generation turbine installations; this flow has enabled newcomers to enter the market and enjoy revenues boosted by healthy feed-in tariffs.
Sounds like a win-win situation, so what’s the problem?
Whilst the adoption of used turbines has been welcome; many assets have been bought and installed in “as is” in conditions with minimal refurbishment undertaken prior to re-commissioning. While this initially sounds appealing from a start-up investment standpoint, the temptation of securing cheap, lightly refurbished, or even un-refurbished turbines, can have many downsides, particularly relating to operational reliability and high, unplanned downstream costs.
Indeed, it is arguable that the reputation of used turbines has suffered due to poor in-service experiences of these “as is” assets that have ultimately underperformed and cost significantly to put right. Many potential investors and banks, discouraged by these experiences, have restricted their investments entirely to new turbines, leaving only the highest yield sites viable for development in a subsidy-free world.
So, how do we make used turbines a more attractive option for both sites and investors?
The advent of comprehensively overhauled, used, OEM approved turbines that carry full-service histories and extended warranties is changing the entire proposition for investors. Out of the box, 5-year indemnities for turbines have allowed lenders to invest with confidence, and owners to structure refinance deals within the early years of operation following the high-risk commissioning phase.
Renewable Parts is leading the way with this new product offering, providing up to 3MW capacity turbines across fleet sizes of up to ten assets. Investment in turbine projects of this size and cost requires high levels of confidence in the product, overhaul process and after sale cover. But get it right and the upsides are considerable, allowing previously shelved business plans to become strongly viable. At around 30% of the cost of new, a Renewable Parts used approved turbine has proven to be a winning solution for customers who see a low risk, low acquisition cost approach to their wind projects.
Based on typical project costs for a single 2-3MW turbine, payback within 5 years is typically feasible, with any potential material costs within this period, outside of typical servicing, covered within Renewable Parts used approved package offering.
A Renewable Parts used approved turbine is provided with a full-service history, a comprehensive refurbishment pack, and a 5-year main component and 2-year minor corrective warranty. All turbines are selected from fleets of the highest provenance, predominantly those that have been operated under OEM backed long term service agreements.
Whether you are interested in a single turbine investment in the low kW class or the procurement of multiple assets in the MW class, Renewable Parts can provide expertise, modelling and the supply of a turbine solution to fit your needs. Commissioning, specialist tooling, transportation, and financing form part of the package of services offered, and ensure customers have the most straightforward approach to developing their new site.
With over 20 years experience in wind turbine maintenance and parts supply, we have the technical expertise to help you reduce costs whilst maximising availability levels.
Renewable Parts Ltd,
Westways Business Park
Renewable Parts Ltd,Old Ambulance Station,School Brae, Lochgilphead,Argyll, ScotlandPA31 8LE