Nordex USA, which develops and manufactures wind turbines, has taken a new order from RPM Access for a 41-MW wind farm development in Delaware County, Iowa. It’s the second large-scale order for Nordex this month, following a booking from EverPower Wind Holdings concerning a 75-MW wind farm project in Pennsylvania.
The Elk Wind Farm that RPM Access is developing in on 3,300 acres of farmland in Manchester, Iowa, is due for completion next October. Des Moines-based RPM Access will own and operate the facility and the Central Iowa Power Cooperative will purchase the power via a 20-year power purchase agreement.
RPM Access has developed six operating wind projects in Iowa over the past 10 years, representing 370 MW of generating capacity, and it has several more projects in development. Iowa produces almost 20% of its energy from wind and is the second-largest generator of wind energy in the U.S.
No value has been reported for the Elk Wind Farm project, but Nordex indicates it will be supplying 17 of its 2.4-MW N100 turbines, which will be manufactured at its recently opened plant in Jonesboro, Ark. The contract includes a 10-year premium service contract, as well as the delivery, installation, commissioning and testing of the N100 turbines.
It will be Nordex USA’s first project with RPM Access, which company president and CEO Ralf Sigrist called “one of the most experienced and knowledgeable developers in the Midwest.
“And as Nordex is also a pioneer in wind, working together was a real meeting of minds,” Sigrist continued. “We share the same passions – building new energy sources for the future, bringing cost predictability to a volatile electricity market and using the best technology available to achieve these goals.”
Nordex USA is an operating subsidiary of Germany’s Nordex Energy GmbH. The N100 turbine is its latest and largest design. Nordex USA opened its Jonesboro, Ark., turbine manufacturing plant in October, having completed the project in July after nine months of construction. The plant was announced last year with a budget of $40-million, but part of a staged development that would eventually cost about $100 million.
The company has 150 employees in the U.S. and 42 at the Jonesboro plant, but Nordex USA anticipates a domestic workforce of up to 700 by 2014 as it expands production.
The new Arkansas operation is producing nacelles for the N100 units — the large housings that contain an engine and other critical turbine components atop a windmill tower. A second stage of development is planned at some future date to assemble rotor blades for windmills.