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_ Auckland Harbour Bridge Walk-cycle-way, NZ
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_ Renewables provide 73% of NZs total electricity
_ NZs Windflow 500kW Turbine: Success!
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_ Links for 14-Apr to 16-Apr 2010
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_ Carbon-Free Britain planned by Center for Alternative Technology (CAT)
Thursday, 16 September 2010
NZ's Windflow 500kW Turbine: Success

NZ's Windflow 500kW Turbine gets IEC class 1A certification!

Windflow Technology Ltd [WTL]'s main page: http://www.windflow.co.nz/
- has: "The engineering innovation of Windflow Technology Limited, (NZAX:WTL) offers wind farm developers a market-leading product for strong turbulent (IEC class 1A) wind conditions such as those experienced in New Zealand. ... The two-bladed, 500 kW Windflow-500|* [is] easy to transport, install and connect."

_|*: http://www.windflow.co.nz/products/windflow-technology-ltd-products
- has:

"_Cost-effective_:
Modern innovative design reduces turbine costs
Reduced transportation and construction costs
No need for expensive equipment to connect to the grid

_Durable and robust_:
Excellent performance in strong and turbulent winds
IEC class 1A certification (pending|` but see 'Achieved' below '_~_~_')
{International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) design standard:
IEC 61400-1 (edition 3)}

_Easy transport, installation and connection_:
Standard-size trucks and cranes
3-5 meter wide roads, no upgrades or infrastructure typically required
Two-bladed rotor and nacelle installed in one easy lift
Synchronous generation allows cost effective connection to the grid"


_WTL's "Information for shareholders and prospective investors" page_:
http://www.windflow.co.nz/investor-relations - links to their _latest_report_: http://snipurl.com/132nhl ; original:
http://www.windflow.co.nz/pdf-folder/Financial-Reporting/Preliminary%20Annual%20Report%20for%20year%20ended%2030%20June%202010.pdf
- published 13 September 2010, which contains:

_|`: IEC Certification (achieved on 15 Sept. press release below "_~_~_")

Apart from the pleasing performance of the turbines at TRH [Te Rere Hau windfarm, see just below], the highlight of the last financial year was receiving IEC design approval in May for the two main design innovations of the Windflow 500:
• the nacelle incorporating the patented Torque Limiting Gearbox and synchronous generator, and
• the two-bladed rotor, incorporating pitch-teeter coupling.
Having third party design verification of the heart of the turbine is a tribute to the extensive engineering work that has gone into the design.

Since balance date the Company has received its manufacturing evaluation conformity statement which testifies to the high quality standards of the Company’s sub-suppliers and the Windflow nacelle assembly processes.
The Company is now working with Lloyds Register to complete the remaining elements of Type Approval being the tower design approval and the overall Type Certificate.
Receiving the full IEC Type Certificate will facilitate the marketing of the Windflow 500 in New Zealand and internationally.


_Te Rere Hau wind farm_

This wind farm being developed with NZ Windfarms now has 65 turbines operating. The remaining 32 turbines are starting to be erected on the eastern extension site. Towers and blades are all at site and the nacelles that have been in storage for the last year will start being delivered to site once the electrical connection is livened. The 48.5 MW project is expected to be fully commissioned by the middle of 2011.

The performance of the turbines over the last year has been very pleasing. NZ Windfarms announced that: for the
• year ended 30 June 2010, the wind farm achieved 95.1% availability and in
• the three months to 30 June 2010 it performed at 96.2% availability.
Both of these measures exceed the contracted performance of the turbines.
NZ Windfarms and Windflow reached agreement in April over the outstanding issues relating to IEC certification and timeframes and payment terms for the batch of 32 turbines. The agreement also set out a process around future design improvements or upgrades and defined methods for dealing with these.

The company is working hard to ensure that any technical issues that arise are resolved in a timely manner in order to keep performance figures above warranted levels.
• As TRH is a world-class wind site, with strong winds and complex terrain, several technical issues have already been addressed over the past year. The company expects to address further issues from time to time over the next year, particularly as new turbines are being commissioned, and has adjusted its [Operation and Maintenance] O&M provisions to allow for these.

The TRH wind farm is proving to be an excellent reference wind farm site for the Windflow 500 and prospective customers who visit the site are generally impressed with the ease of installation, low environmental impact, and operational performance of the innovative turbines.

It is pleasing to be able to report the improved relationship which has developed between Windflow and NZ Windfarmshttp://www.nzx.com/markets/NZSX/NWF


_Long Gully_

One of the other major achievements in the last year was the Wellington City Council grant of resource consent for up to 25 Windflow 500 turbines at the Long Gully wind farm site. The two Environment Court appeals were resolved by June 2010 leaving a clear consent.

Windflow led the consenting effort on behalf of Mighty River Power who initiated the project.
The fact that the local community generally supported the modest-sized wind farm and that the consent was granted in a timely manner is a tribute to the distributed generation philosophy and the team involved.

Due to a change in Mighty River Power’s generation portfolio strategy which has seen them divesting small scale generation, Mighty River Power notified Windflow in June that it would not proceed to construction stage as expected.

Windflow has since been in negotiations with Mighty River Power to transfer the project to Windflow so that the Company can work towards other avenues which would see the project built and contributing towards the country’s renewable energy target. If these negotiations are successful, Windflow will announce further plans for the project.


_International markets_

With the turbines pleasing track record at TRH, the Company’s production and quality systems well established and the essential elements of IEC certification in place, Windflow has increasingly been progressing opportunities in international markets.

United Kingdom
The most exciting of these opportunities is in the United Kingdom (UK) where policies incentivising small scale renewable generation came into place on 1 April and resulted in an unprecedented demand for 500 kW wind turbines. Windflow staff have been responding to enquiries since the end of 2009 when the Feed In Tariffs were signalled.
Market visits in May and June confirmed the sizeable opportunity and resulted in identification of several potential partners for a timely market entry.
The company entered into a Heads of Agreement with a preferred distributor in June and concluded the agreement in August, announcing Ventus Green Energy from Scotland as Windflow’s exclusive distributor in the UK.

The level of these incentives provide a compelling investment opportunity for customers in the UK.
Accordingly Windflow, as one of the few 500 kW turbine providers in the world, is now well placed to make significant sales in this market and will be working alongside its distributor to progress potential orders. Once initial orders are achieved, which will depend among other things on Windflow’s ability to obtain performance bonds and other such financial arrangements as are normally required for export business, the Company anticipates rapid growth of orders in the short term. Accordingly the Company is working closely with its bankers, NZ Trade and Enterprise and the NZ Export Credit Office in this effort.

Chile
Windflow is continuing to work with its agent, Seawind South America, to promote the Windflow 500 in Chile.
CEO/Director Geoff Henderson visited Chile in June to meet with prospective customers from the mining and energy industry and to assess sites.

The New Zealand government is supporting environmental co-operation between Chile and New Zealand and a meeting was requested with Windflow when the Chilean Energy Minister visited Wellington in late June.
The Chilean Energy Minister has since met with Seawind in Chile and Windflow is hopeful of future developments in this market.

USA
The USA has been a target market for Windflow for many years, and with the first production run of the 50 Hz turbine successfully completed, attention is turning to _development_of_ the _60_Hz_version_ for the North American market. This market has grown significantly in the last year, with US policies around renewable energy seeing large investment in projects and local manufacturing capability.
New Zealand Trade and Enterprise hosted a networking reception in Dallas in May during the American Wind Energy Association conference on behalf of four NZ companies attending the conference, including Windflow. Over 60 potential suppliers, customers and partners attended the evening and learned about New Zealand’s clean technology offerings.

In preparation for Windflow’s planned US market entry, Windflow staff have worked towards securing potential demonstration sites for Windflow turbines in the high wind regions of southern California, and met with potential O&M-partners and customers. There has also been progress in developing relationships with potential investment partners.
...


_Outlook_

Overall, Windflow has many positive accomplishments and should have a great future, poised as it is to participate in the largest 21st century growth sector of the electricity industry. $90 billion worth of wind turbines were installed in 2009 world-wide. In order to access a share of this market, Windflow has established and is seeking to grow a knowledge-based industry _in_New Zealand’s_unsubsidised_economy_.
The company has unique intellectual property around its light-weight yet robust design. This provides a fundamental manufacturing cost advantage, which will come into its own with sustained quantity production. This underpins Windflow’s confidence that it will now achieve significant ongoing sales based on the turbine’s merits as evidenced by its track record at TRH and the IEC certification. As usual there is no shortage of challenges for Windflow. 2009 was a tough year for Windflow, as it was for most of the global wind industry. Turbine orders fell generally in 2009, there is now an oversupply of turbines world-wide and prices have fallen as a result. The volatility of the New Zealand dollar affects Windflow’s competitiveness with international suppliers from month to month.
In New Zealand, electricity demand growth has been weak, the hydro lakes are full and the spot market for wholesale electricity is not providing encouraging signals for new generation here.
The NZ Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) took effect in July but its value as an incentive for renewable energy appears very small (less than 1 ¢/kWh) especially after it was reduced by legislative changes last year.

All of these challenges, along with last year’s difficult dispute with NZ Windfarms, have contributed to the fact that the Company has been delayed in its market development plans. A production gap in the first half of calendar 2011 is now inevitable due to the lead times between orders and key nacelle assembly components being available. The directors and management are working to minimise production disruption pending the receipt of ongoing orders. As a result further losses are expected in the year ending 30 June 2011.

With so much world-class technical development completed and a convincing track record in place, the Company remains committed to the fundamental rationale for developing the Class 1A Windflow turbine for New Zealand’s challenging wind environment and similar niches within the large international market. The Company is focusing on securing future orders, both in New Zealand and overseas, and is attracting strong interest in the fact that the turbines are proving themselves on the Manawatu Saddle. Exciting and challenging times are ahead for the Company as it aims to achieve further sales and move into export markets. The Company is working closely with its bankers, NZ Trade and Enterprise and the NZ Export Credit Office in this effort.

Windflow is now preparing for new capital raisings to finance its plans for the next phase of development both in NZ and overseas. The directors have already commenced work on preparation of an offer document and will be communicating more about this in due course.

The contribution that Windflow makes to the knowledge economy and job creation in New Zealand is something that all stakeholders (staff, suppliers and shareholders included), should be proud of. What the Company has achieved to date, despite setbacks along the way, should not be underestimated. The directors would like to acknowledge the support of all the Company’s stakeholders and thank them for being part of the journey thus far.


{Footnote: One estimate of the electric production at the TRH windfarm is at: http://cli.gs/6TaAzg (that is:http://davd.tripod.com/#new1 )}

_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_~_
_|`: MEDIA RELEASE:

http://www.windflow.co.nz/news/media-releases/2010/windflow-marks-major-engineering-achievement
- 15 September 2010, is:

Windflow marks Major Engineering Achievement

Windflow Technology has _achieved_ a major engineering success with the news today that Lloyd’s Register has awarded its Type Approval Certificate to the Windflow 500 turbine. This confirms that the turbine meets Class 1A of the latest International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) design standard IEC 61400-1 (edition 3).

Class 1A certification attests that the Windflow 500 will operate for more than 20 years in the strongest, most turbulent wind regime in the IEC classification.

The Company reports that certification has required years of engineering horsepower and has set a new standard in wind turbine excellence in the medium size 500 kW category.

It gives interested parties and purchasers of the Windflow 500 turbine confidence that the turbine has been rigorously tested to operate in the highest strength winds. During the IEC process 2,800 pages of engineering calculations were scrutinised by Lloyd’s Register along with more than 200 drawings and 37 specifications; the prototype turbine at Gebbies Pass (near Christchurch) was put through a regime of safety and mechanical load tests, as well as measuring its acoustics and power output. The blade was tested for its ultimate strength by the University of Canterbury and for its fatigue life at the IRL test hall in Auckland.

According to Chief Executive Officer Geoff Henderson the confirmation of IEC certification is the end of an engineering marathon and a strong kick-start to the international marketing drive that recently gained critical momentum through a policy change in the UK. The company has assembled a team of 20 professional engineers in its Christchurch headquarters supported by the company’s commercial team, the skilled tradespeople in its nacelle assembly and blade factories, and the windsmiths in Palmerston North servicing its 66 operating turbines. The company, which is the only utility-scale wind turbine manufacturer in Australasia, currently employs more than 50 people directly and about 400 indirectly throughout New Zealand.

“We are immensely proud of our team’s work and despite challenges along the way we always believed that our innovative Windflow 500 would speak for itself and affirm the confidence of our shareholders,” said Mr Henderson. “Windflow Technology and the Windflow 500 have set a new wind energy benchmark and one that our supporters can feel very excited about. The turbine is designed for New Zealand’s lean and mean economic environment as well as our turbulent high wind sites. Its fundamental economic advantage is that it uses fewer tonnes of materials (typically 50%) for the same output as competing 3-bladers (large or mid-size). The class 1A IEC Type Approval validates this lighter, smarter approach to operating at high wind sites.”

Wind turbine certification is an independent determination that provides assurance of a turbine performing for a minimum of 20 years in a specified environment. Because the IEC certification standard prescribes required safety margins for all engineering calculations, compliance provides the statistical backup sought by those who finance and insure wind farms.

Currently 66 Windflow 500 turbines are installed in New Zealand. A full-scale prototype has been operating since 2003 at Gebbies Pass near Christchurch. Five began operation at the Te Rere Hau wind farm on the outskirts of Palmerston North in 2006 with another 60 being installed at Te Rere Hau between November 2008 and October 2009. In addition 32 turbines are in production and are planned to be installed at Te Rere Hau by mid-2011.

Background

Windflow Technology was built around the pioneering engineering efforts of Geoff Henderson and his team as they determinedly designed, built and marketed the breakthrough two-blade wind turbine with innovative design features including a 33 metre diameter teetering rotor, a torque-limiting gearbox and a 30 metre tall tower.

A pre-requisite to the IEC certification was ISO 9001 certification which Windflow Technology achieved in June 2008.

IEC Milestones

ISO 9001                                             June 2008

Design approval

            Nacelle                                    May 2010

            Rotor assembly                     May 2010

            Tower                                       September 2010

Type testing                                        August 2010

Manufacturing evaluation                August 2010

Type Approval                                    September 2010

 

Windflow Technology: Business Milestones

  • September 2001: Initial public offering raises $2.6 million. This provides the funds to commence developing the prototype and seek a Resource Consent for the first site at Gebbies Pass on Banks Peninsula, near Christchurch.
  • July 2003: Installation and start up of the prototype turbine at Gebbies Pass.
  • September 2003: A 1 for 2 Rights Issue raises just under $5 million. This provides funds to continue development of the turbine and the Te Rere Hau wind farm site.
  • November 2003: Windflow Technology is one of “the first fifteen” companies listed on the NZAX market when it opens.
  • December 2003: Granting of 519,000 tonnes of carbon credits to NZ Windfarms, then a wholly owned subsidiary of Windflow Technology, for the development of the Te Rere Hau wind farm near Palmerston North.
  • February 2005: Granting of a Resource Consent to NZ Windfarms to develop the 97 turbine Te Rere Hau wind farm.
  • June 2005: Windflow Technology raises $3.3 million by way of a further Rights issue.
  • December 2005: An initial public offering by NZ Windfarms raises $4 million followed by listing on the NZAX. Windflow Technology’s stake is accordingly reduced from full ownership to a 43% shareholding.
  • August 2006: A consortium of Babcock & Brown and NP Power enter into a 50-50 joint venture arrangement with NZ Windfarms for the development of Te Rere Hau wind farm plus possible other sites.
  • September 2006: Installation and start up of the first five turbines (of 97 in total) on the Te Rere Hau wind farm. The farm is opened by the Prime Minister, Rt. Hon. Helen Clark.
  • October 2006: Exercise of options by NZ Windfarms shareholders raises a further $4 million, diluting Windflow Technology’s shareholding in NZ Windfarms to 27%.
  • May 2007: A subsequent public offering by NZ Windfarms raises $75 million including Vector Limited taking a cornerstone stake of 19.9%. Windflow Technology’s shareholding in NZ Windfarms dilutes to 3%.
  • September 2007: Windflow Technology establishes its own nacelle assembly factory in Riccarton, Christchurch and moves to adjoining offices.
  • January 2007 - October 2008: The Te Rere Hau joint venture orders further 92 Windflow 500 turbines to be installed at Te Rere Hau.
  • October 2007: Windflow Technology wins the Sustainable Business Network’s Sustainable Design and Innovation Award and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority’s Product Innovation Award for its Windflow 500 turbine.
  • November 2007: Windflow Technology raises $5 million in a fully-subscribed Rights issue.
  • December 2007: Windflow Technology acquires remaining 50% of Wind Blades Ltd (its blade manufacturing operation in Pakuranga, Auckland).
  • April 2008: Windflow Technology staff numbers 50, a major increase from 15 in April 2007.
  • June 2008: Windflow Technology forms a Joint Venture with AH Gears (its gearbox manufacturer in Auckland), called Wind Gears Ltd.
  • June 2008: Windflow Technology gains ISO 9001 certification.
  • June/October 2008: The company announced on 30 June 2008 an agreement with State Owned Enterprise electricity generator and retailer Mighty River Power under which Windflow Technology will construct a wind farm (Long Gully) for Mighty River Power using Windflow 500 turbines. State Owned Enterprise electricity generator and retailer Mighty River Power buys a 19.95% cornerstone shareholding in Windflow Technology.
  • September/October 2008: Windflow Technology raised $10.3 million through the September options exercise, private placements, and the Mighty River Power share purchase.
  • November 2009: 65 turbines operating at Te Rere Hau wind farm.
  • March 2010: NZ Windfarms receives consent for an additional 56 Windflow 500 turbines at Te Rere Hau wind farm on an eastern extension.
  • May 2010: NZ Windfarms raises $31.4 million to complete Te Rere Hau wind farm.
  • June 2010: Long Gully wind farm south-west of Wellington receives consent for 25 Windflow 500 turbines, clear of appeals.
  • August 2010: Windflow Technology signs UK Distributor Agreement with Ventus Green Energy to maximise the wind energy opportunities for 500 kW turbines under the UK government’s feed-in tariff scheme.
  • September 2010: Windflow 500 receives IEC Type Approval Certificate from Lloyd’s Register.

 

For further information please contact:
Mr Geoff Henderson, Chief Executive Officer and Director, tel: 03 365 8960

Posted by davd at 12:55 NZD
Updated: Friday, 17 September 2010 16:04 NZD
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