Wind towers are a design marvel. Ideally, one would want them to be as tall as possible, so as to make best use of the wind shear brought about by the variation in wind velocity. Height is important to reduce the influence of surface factors like drag or friction. Hence, the taller the wind turbine tower, the better it is able to generate power.
But, an increase in height is also a concern, especially as most of these towers are built on hilly terrain and can be very unsteady after a certain threshold. This is the reason, why there are a handful of companies in the world that are renowned for creating wind towers that can be reliable at such heights. And it’s precisely for the same reason that 2011 Chennai-based Powergear Ltd. decided to ink up a joint-venture with Spanish wind power firm Gestamp Wind Steel to manufacture wind towers near Chennai with an initial investment of Rs 150 crore. A 20-acre greenfield manufacturing facility was set up at Sricity, a planned integrated business city located on the southern tip of Andhra Pradesh, 60 km away from Chennai. It was a brave business decision as the wind power sector in India was in a state of flux. Yet, Powergear decided to join hands with a leading company like Gestamp, simply because it believed that an investment in right technology is a wise business investment.
For three decades and more the Chennai-based power component manufacturer had been notching up decent growth, riding on the back of growth of the power sector in India. But its founders knew well that to forge ahead, one had to do things differently. And so they did by moving stridently into the wind power space.
One of the factors that helped Powergear shift gears was the fact that its biggest client, GE, was right behind it to support with business orders and technological knowhow. With GE Power extending its roadmap in India and abroad, Powergear knew that acquiring new capabilities would only help its growing business. In fact, it was the partnership with GE that truly was a game changer for Powergear. It was in 1999, when the company partnered with GE. It was on a project related to generator terminal equipment used in the sub-stations. Given the breadth of Powergear's experience in the sector, the project was concluded in a manner that worked to the satisfaction of GE. And the rest as they say is history.
Today, Powergear is a leading manufacturer in the power equipment space, with over 800 employees working at its five factories in India. Its equipments are enabling power plants in over 52 countries across the globe.Playing it right