Wind Power Technology Forecast to 2025
Authors: Eize de Vries
Published: April, 2015
Pages: 48 | Tables: 3 | Figures: 47

Based on extensive primary research this study profiles the major wind power technology trends, and identifies which of these will have the greatest impact on the wind power industry over the next five to 10 years.

The study examines component by component significant issues affecting development, such as: access, transportation, power system demands, health and safety, and others.

From advances in component technologies to significant R&D projects, the report considers varying factors such as consumption, legislation and business dynamics.

Find out about

  • How technology developments will affect the market globally
  • Which technologies will have the greatest impact on the wind power supply chain

What do you get?

  • Detailed analysis of the wind power sector globally
  • A thorough assessment of wind power technology developments accross the supply chain to 2025

Who should buy this report

  • Wind turbine manufacturers
  • Components and equipment providers
  • Wind maintenance and service companies
  • Utilities and wind developers seeking opportunities
  • Financial institutions assessing risk and opportunities
  • Consultancies specialising in wind industry
  • Renewables policy makers-national or regional

What’s included in the price?

  • A hard copy of the report
  • Electronic version with searchable PDF
  • Global intranet licence, allowing data to be distributed throughout your organisation

How will Intelligence benefit you?

  • Stay ahead of the competition by getting the latest industry figures and analysis
  • Pinpoint growth and identify factors driving change
  • Plan for the future with confidence


The most topical technology question facing the wind power industry today is
how much bigger will turbines become. Generally, bigger power ratings tend to
be accompanied by larger rotors but in configuration choices depending upon
wind class – so in Wind Class I sites (characterised by stronger wind speeds
above 8.5m/s) stronger gears and bearings, larger foundations and so on are
This report addresses these questions and more, going through the
technological challenges facing the industry and giving an insightful perspective
on the most likely ways forward.
There continues to be tension between the established industry model of
developing turbines gradually, based on the evolutionary upscaling of existing
products, and a desire for disruptive, revolutionary developments based on
radical concept changes. This tension will be explored in some detail.
High-speed, medium-speed and low-speed geared versus direct-drive power
conversion and a possible role for hydraulic systems is another hot topic. This
report presents the technology arguments for and against each type, but also
gives an overview of market forces and industry opinions. The role of rare earth
metals and copper prices in the fortunes of permanent magnet generators is also
Since the previous version of this report was issued about a year ago,
the two major developments in the sector have been the significant growth
of offshore wind and the rapid development of low-wind sites onshore. Both
developments presented new technological challenges and opened up avenues
for further industrial development. An emerging trend is the development and
introduction of next-generation large onshore turbines in the range 3.8–5MW
and matching rotor diameters for different wind classes. These issues are
explored in some detail in the following pages while the appendix at the back of
this report also provides a good at-a-glance overview, charting some of the key
trends for both on- and offshore wind power development to 2025.


This report presents an overview and analysis of research and development
trends over the next ten years for wind power technology.
Based on the Windpower Intelligence (WPI) database, we have also
produced forecasts for the period 2015–25. These include:
• forecast of annual installed capacity per geographical region;
• forecast of turbine size for onshore and offshore models;
• forecast of drive systems and generator types
• forecast of offshore projects by water depth and distance from shore;
• and forecast of offshore projects by foundation type.
Using the WPI tracker as the foundation for our reports enables WPI to
produce a bottom-up projection of future global market development around
actual individual projects moving through the pipeline. For the purposes of this
report, we only took account of projects that are currently ‘in progress’, meaning
that they are not yet in operation, nor have they been put on hold or cancelled.
For the data analysis, we used a snapshot of the database taken on 11 February
2015. Information we may have learned after that date is not reflected in this
Our short-and medium-term forecasts of future installed wind capacity are
drawn from the February 2015 issue of the WPI Global Forecast. This is a
monthly forecast report that provides up-to-date country forecasts based on
ongoing research alongside collection and verification of pipeline data.
Our long-term forecast of future installed wind capacity is produced based
on analysis of future pipelines in our WPI database, linear regression analysis
of historical installed capacity and research on individual countries’ policies and

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