Published On:June 4 2008
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Suzlon signs pact with US to boost capacity

Mumbai: Suzlon Energy, the world's fifth-biggest wind turbine maker, is among six others who have signed an agreement with the US government to help the world's biggest economy generate 20 per cent of its electricty using wind power by 2030. The pact may aid the Pune-based company win more orders for power equipment and improve manufacturing technology.

The US Department of Energy (DoE) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with GE Energy, Siemens Power Generation, Vestas Wind Systems, Clipper Turbine Works, Suzlon Energy and Gamesa Corporation to improve industrial wind power manufacturing capabilities, said a DoE release.

US is the fastest growing wind energy market in the world with 30 per cent annual growth in the last five years and with over 25 per cent of the global installed capacity. In 2007, the States' cumulative wind energy capacity reached 16,818 mw with more than 5,000 mw of wind power capacity added in 2007 at an investment of $9 billion. Wind power is the second largest new power generation source in the US now after natural gas.

The six companies will collaborate to improve the quality of turbine components and to reduce installation and operating costs. Further, the partners, along with the US Department of Energy, will address environmental and technical issues, and develop standards for turbine certification and grid connection, added the release.

The Rs 13,769 crore wind energy equipment company based in Pune has already captured over 8 per cent of the US wind energy market in the recent two to three years.

Suzlon has received a supply order of 600 mw in two years from Horizon Wind Energy of Texas, one of the largest wind power developers in the US.

Suzlon had to recently face the issue of blade cracking discovered during the operations of some of its S-88 turbines in the United States. The company is currently implementing a Rs 100-crore retrofit program for the structural strengthening of the damaged 1,251 (417 sets) blades installed in different wind locations.

Suzlon Rotor Corporation, its US subsidiary that manufactures wind turbine blades and nose cones at Pipestone, Minnesota, was also fined by the local Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) for allegedly violating air pollution control norms.

Suzlon's shares slipped by 3.60 per cent on the Bombay Stock Exchange to close the day at Rs 268.05.

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