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Cost Composition of Wind Power Generation

At present, China's wind power and photovoltaic power generation installed capacity has ranked first in the world, becoming the two main forces of China's new energy system. What are the cost components of a wind power project?

Onshore Wind Power Cost Composition

Wind power is like a big electric fan, consisting of three parts: the blades, the fan, the tower (tower), and below that there will be a machine base. The core of the wind turbine is the small piece at the back, which involves a lot of structural parts, such as, gear box, generator, bearings, etc. The fan on top is able to rotate 360 degrees, and no matter which direction the wind is blowing, it can be adjusted by a computer program to make the fan turn in the direction of the windward side that is the largest, so that more electricity can be generated.

The operator first selects the wind farm, signs the development intention with the government, and then through a series of environmental assessment, the developer conducts the wind power bidding. Because it involves the exclusive possession of local wind resources, after the development of this place, this piece of wind resources is yours, which leads to the government and the operator to sign some agreements, for example, must use local wind turbine parts, or regulations on tariffs, taxes, and so on. For operators, the core is to monopolize this piece of wind resources.

wind power generation
wind power generation

Project status of wind power

Wind turbines account for the largest proportion of the whole project, up to 40-60%. The three northern regions because the development cost is a little lower, or the wind turbine can be made a little bigger, in this case, the wind turbine accounts for the whole industry chain profit will be more. Next is the tower, and then after the transportation fee, the big head is still earned to the wind turbine. As the future wind turbine continues to be bigger, it will make the wind turbine account for the whole industry chain's profit (income) is higher in the future.

Wind power industry chain, wind turbine parts inside the cost accounted for more than a few, one is the blade, accounted for the largest; followed by the hub, and then bearings, spindle, gear box, tower, the other basically accounted for the cost is very small.

Offshore Wind Power Cost Composition

According to the actual projects carried out in various coastal provinces of the country, analyzing the cost of offshore wind power projects in various regions, generally speaking, the cost of offshore wind power projects per kilowatt is relatively high. (According to the cycle of offshore wind power project, the cost analysis in this paper mainly considers the investment cost of the project development and construction phase.)

Offshore wind farm cost is mainly composed of the following parts: equipment purchase cost, construction and safety costs, other costs, interest. The proportion of each part of the total cost is different, the impact on the total cost is not the same.

wind power generation
wind power generation

1.Equipment acquisition costs at this stage of equipment acquisition costs (excluding collector line cable) accounted for about 50% of the project cost, a greater impact on the cost. Among them, the wind turbine and tower account for about 85% of the equipment cost, and the unit cost is about RMB 7,500-8,500/kW, which has a greater impact on the overall equipment cost; the sending out submarine cable accounts for about 5% of the equipment cost, and the unit cost is about RMB 500/kW; and the related electrical equipment accounts for about 10% of the equipment cost, and the unit cost is about RMB 1,000/kW.

2.Construction and installation costs

Construction and safety costs account for about 35% of the total cost, the unit cost of about 6,000 to 7,000 RMB / kW. Currently, the number of completed offshore wind power wind farm projects is relatively small, small scale, the corresponding ship and machine equipment is not mature, the construction team is relatively single, the construction of the lack of experience, resulting in higher construction costs, coupled with the complexity of the offshore construction conditions, the construction of difficult, construction of the key equipment required (such as offshore wind turbine foundation), piling, wind turbine lifting, etc.

Professional available large ship equipment is less ship class cost is high. Piling, wind turbine lifting, etc.) specializing in the availability of large ship engine equipment is less, the ship class cost is high, relative to onshore wind power, offshore wind power construction and safety costs account for a significant proportion of the total cost.

3.Other costs

Other costs, including project sea land fees, project construction and management costs, production preparation costs, accounting for about 10% of the total cost, unit cost of about 1600 ~ 1900 yuan / kW. Due to the scarcity of marine resources, labor wages, longer cycle of preliminary work, and other reasons, other costs will rise slightly, especially with the sea farming compensation, marine ecological restoration and other costs rose more significantly;

but with the increase in the number of offshore wind power development, project development and construction experience, the owner of their own project management level will be enhanced, will offset some of these rising factors. Even if the other costs down 10%, the total cost down less than 1%, the impact is relatively limited.


Interest and wind farm construction cycle and interest rates, accounting for about 5% of the total cost. With the continuous progress of offshore wind power construction technology, especially the shortening of the duration of the key projects, interest will have a certain degree of decline. As for the interest rate, it is a policy cost and changes mainly when the country regulates the macro economy. Overall, the impact of interest on the cost of wind farms has a large uncertainty.

wind power generation
wind power generation

Cost differences between onshore and offshore wind

Currently, the cost of offshore wind power is essentially double that of onshore wind power. The following is a comparison of the cost of offshore and onshore wind power from the pre-project period, project construction period and the whole life cycle of the project operation period.

Project pre-project: offshore wind farms have a relatively long pre-project time, need to coordinate more departments, mainly including marine, maritime, etc., and need to obtain more supportive documents, sea area, navigation, marine environmental assessment. Compared with onshore, the cost of project preliminary work is higher.

Project construction period: compared to onshore wind farms, offshore wind power project construction, equipment costs and construction and installation costs have increased significantly. Equipment costs, offshore wind turbine kilowatt price is about two times that of onshore wind turbines, sea cables and offshore booster station and other electrical equipment prices are higher than onshore wind farms; construction and installation costs, due to the poor conditions of offshore construction, high difficulty, wind turbine foundations, wind turbine installation costs far more than the cost of onshore wind farms.

Project operation period: offshore wind farms need to maintain the equipment mainly includes wind turbine equipment, booster station equipment and platforms, sea cables and so on. However, offshore wind farms are generally far away from shore, coupled with unfavorable sea conditions such as typhoons, storm surges and other weather-induced large waves, poor accessibility, wind turbine operation and maintenance is more difficult, maintenance costs are very high.

At present, according to the characteristics of the project equipment in the life of the gradual decline in reliability, the repair rate is considered in stages, generally the construction period and the warranty period to take 0.5% of the value of the fixed assets, and (5 to 10) years as a time period, step by step to increase the repair rate to 3.0%. According to the European offshore wind farm operation and maintenance experience, the operation and maintenance workload of wind farms is about 2 to 4 times that of onshore wind farms of the same scale, and the operation and maintenance workload is larger and more difficult.

wind power generation
wind power generation

Boland Renewable Energy Co.,LTD As an integrated new energy power company, providing you with high quality integrated wind energy , solar energy and energy storage system solutions.Boland is now a subsidiary of CRRC, and is responsible for the overseas expansion of  CRRC's wind power & solar power business. We have a relatively complete internal supply chain, service network and excellent product quality and technology.

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