The renewable energy industry is growing at a significant pace. In particular, the wind energy production industry is experiencing immense growth. Technology manufacturers are investing more in wind turbine technology development. In this article, we’ll explore what is in store for the wind turbine industry and how IT companies, CIOs and IT managers can benefit from growth in this industry.
Wind turbine industry will reach $187.2 million by 2026
Forecasts show that the small wind turbine industry will reach $187.2 million by 2026. Experts say that Asia will be the leading player in wind energy production, with China and India taking the lead. Around 35% of the world’s electricity needs will be produced by onshore and offshore wind turbine technology, by 2050.
Number of wind turbine installations will increase, but cost of installation will decrease
A little over 50% of all global wind turbine onshore installations by 2050, will be done in Asia. This will be followed by North America (23%) and Europe (10%). When it comes to offshore installations, 60% of new wind turbines will be installed in Asia, followed by Europe (23%) and North America (16%). The combined wind energy generation capacity of all these onshore turbines is expected to be north of 5044GW. Offshore turbines are expected to produce 1000GW.
The cost of installation of wind turbines are expected to lower in prices to $650-$1000 per kW (for onshore) and $1400-$2800 per kW (for offshore). Currently, onshore and offshore wind turbine installation fall between $3000–$8000 per kilowatt. This is mainly because of increased demand for renewably-generated electricity, better supply technology and higher investment by IT companies, governmental investors and individuals.
State-of-the-art floating wind turbine farms may become a reality in a few decades
Floating wind farms have always been favored because of their higher eco-friendliness, increased efficiency, better access to sea winds and improved energy production capacity. Efforts are being made to increase the number of floating wind farms in the world. Forecasts state that around 5%-15% of the world’s global offshore wind turbine technology will become a floating wind turbine farm by 2050.
Wind turbines are undergoing immense technological upgrades
Wind turbine technology is being upgraded to meet the future needs of the renewable energy industry. Already work has begun on building larger capacity wind turbine technology to replace smaller turbines. Onshore turbines may reach 5MW in size, with offshore reaching 12MW by 2050. But, if the rapid developments continue to take place, this could also increase to 20MW.
A few other wind turbine technology upgrades that the industry can look forward to are:
- Improved energy capture through active pitch controls.
- Completely revamped wing design – some as long as 95 meters - made using reaction injection molding, compression molding and injection molding.
- Usage of drone technology and Artificial Intelligence technology to improve wind turbine maintenance.
- Usage of Machine Learning to predict instances of wind turbine failure or accidents.
- Development of smart grids to make wind energy production safer, more efficient and more affordable.
- Integration of wind turbines into standing structures such as lightning poles and towers.
In order to achieve all of this, wind turbine manufacturers are seeking partnerships with IT companies – which include software providers and hardware manufacturers. CIOs and IT managers will find the wind generation industry to be a highly profitable field to explore in the decades to come.
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