Offshore wind turbines: AREVA’s 5 Megawatt full load test bench in operation since October 2011


All AREVA M5000 5 Megawatt offshore wind turbines are tested from now on in the new full load test bench in Bremerhaven (Germany) to deliver a 100% quality product to the next offshore sites. The test bench offers the possibility to check the functionality under nominal load conditions and is a tool for the qualification of Second Source components. The worldwide unique test bench sets a new standard for the industrialization of offshore wind with full 5MW load tests of all assembled nacelles prior to commissioning.

Offshore wind turbine erection and operation costs are key determinants of project economics. This is one of AREVA Wind’s lessons learned of Alpha Ventus – the first German offshore wind farm. AREVA Wind CEO, Jean Huby explains: “AREVA Wind and our customers will benefit from the new test facility. AREVA Wind reached a new quality standard.”

AREVA Wind already offers today proven offshore solutions with unique customer value, including in-house full-scale test bench for best in class quality assurance of drive train, nacelle and electrical systems. The worldwide first 5 Megawatt full load test bench was set up in 11 months and the first AREVA M5000 tests have been successful.

The AREVA Group has made a strategic investment of 15 Million Euro in quality leadership by constructing a full-scale 5MW test bench for best-in class quality assurance. The common task “Improvement of the regional economic structure”, of the federal state Bremen and German Federation by public subsidies supported the expansion of the establishment and the construction of the nacelle test bench.

One full load test run of a complete nacelle, including electrical power train (Generator, Converter, transformer and MV Switch boards), takes up to 48 hours without set-up time. Major advantages of the new full load test facility are a reduced failure rate and therefore minimized economical risks, high availability just after commissioning, a quality assessment of entire nacelle components and clear criteria for customer acceptance of the AREVA wind turbine. The test bench allows a long term test of major components under overload conditions and offers an efficient assessment of Grid compliance.