Technological Improvements Expected To Lower Wind Turbine Gearbox Costs

NAW Staff, Tuesday 18 December 2012 - 13:02:39

Thanks mainly to an uptick in installations, the global market for wind turbine gearboxes increased from an estimated $3.2 billion in 2006 to $6.9 billion in 2011 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.8%, according to a new report from Global Information Inc.

The average cost of a gearbox unit is also expected to decline by 2020, due mainly to the technological improvements made to gearbox equipment. Against this backdrop, the global wind turbine gearbox market is expected to reach $8.1 billion by 2020, increasing at a CAGR of 1.8% between 2006 and 2020, according to the report.

The global wind turbine gearbox market, including independent suppliers and in-house manufacturers, is dominated by Winergy and China High Speed Transmission Equipment. The two companies accounted for a combined 51.5% share of global gearbox production for wind turbines in 2011.

Winergy leads global wind turbine gearbox production, accounting for a 27% share, followed closely by China High Speed Transmission Equipment, with 24.5%. Hansen Transmissions International comes in third, with a 12% share, followed by Bosch Rexroth, with 5.7%. Moventas and Gamesa Corporacion Tecnologica account for respective shares of 4.8% and 4.7%.

Rotor blades
Meanwhile, global annual wind turbine rotor-blade installations increased steadily from 2006 to 2009 due to more wind farms coming online as a result of favorable governmental policies in several countries and also due to increasing environmental awareness.

China and the U.S. dominated the rotor-blade market in 2011 in terms of the number of blades installed in the period. The two countries installed 37,385 and 11,085 wind rotor blades, respectively, and together contributed to more than 75% of the global wind rotor blade installations.




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