Speeches 40 years

Jens Midtiby, Vestas Wind Systems•    Thank you very much for the invitation – it is an honour for us, Bettina, Alice and Jens, to be allowed to participate in your fine 40th anniversary

•    Dear Tvind and dear Britta and Allan, many and very well deserved congratulations with the fine and fantastic anniversary – this is a very big day for Tvind as well as for you – we are together here both to celebrate the Tvind wind turbine, but also to say thank you very much to Tvind for the big achievement both within renewable energy and for the Danish windmill industry

•    Shortly about my background and history as I have experienced it personally in my work at Vestas Wind Systems Ltd:
-    I started my work with Vestas at the end of the 1980 in the production – I was employee no. 13 in the wind turbine section
-    At the time Vestas was producing 22 kW + 30 kW and had just started producing 55 kW windmills – compared with the Tvind turbine’s 1725 kW generator capacity
-    My father failed to comprehend my career change and was sure that wind turbines was new-fangled nonsense which would not continue to be around for many years  – his prediction almost came true when Vestas went bankrupt towards the end of 1986
-    In 1983 I was summoned for a development meeting at Vestas and here Birger T. Madsen presented the future development plan for the Vestas wind turbines


•    Vestas was going to develop a new pitch regulered wond turbine of 150 kW og blades of 11 m – rotor Ø of 23 m
•    All Vestas wind turbines above 100 kW were going to have pitchable wings – similar to the ones the Tvind Windmill has
•    Next generation of over 500 kW was also to be able to regulate the revolutions of the generator within a limited area
•    When Vestas would want to go beyond the magical 1000 kW or 1.0 MW have pitch-regulation and a larger area for regulating the revolutions of the generator – which the Tvind windmill has – using a converter between the generator and the electrical grid


•    My immediate comment was whether Vestas was going to  produce Tvind windmills with concrete towers? – because this was all I could imagine at the time


•    In 1983 these visions were huge – and to me unreal and far into the future
-    I have to admit it– I did not believe that Vestas would ever be able to develop and produce windmills of this size – bigger than 1000 kW was beyond my imagination in 1983
-    In 1999 Vestas finally installs a wind turbine of the same effect, 1750 kW, as the Tvind Wind Turbine, although with slightly longer blades – which is 32 m, and a Ø 66 m rotor – V66-1.75 MW
-    It took Vestas 16 years to get from 55 kW up to the same size as your wind turbine
-    In 2004 we burst the 3.0 MW limit with V90-3.0 MW and today we have reached a mind-blowing 8.0 MW – V164-8.0 MW with blades of 80 m!

•    On the basis of this brief historical retrospect, I will allow myself to present the following assumptions:
-    Throughout the years leading up to 2000 the Tvind Wind Turbine was just the clear and shining ”light house” we all tried to catch up with – you were our goal
-    This is thrown into relief by the fact that you had produced many kilo watt hours, kWh,  20 years before we reached your capacity
-    With your wind tubined you made it possible for me to keep believing that one day we too could produce a wind turbine with your capacity
-    You have also managed to keep the windmill maintained and even develop and install new technology – such as the new converter

•    More than forty years ago you, Tvind, had the courage to fire up the debate about energy – nuclear power versus other energy sources – including alternative energy such as wind power

•    You were a very important part of the strong grassroot movement which in the early 1980s created opportunities for the great, future Danish windmill industry

•    The big attention you created with this fantastic project meant that our politicians entered the stage and the basis of the present Danish windmill industry was laid

•    I will allow myself to say it in my own words – Without a doubt, you, Tvind, were part of laying the foundation of this new industry – You were a part of our “cradle”

•    As we know many other many other MW windmills have been installed around the world – they were installed with completely different goals – but only the Tvind Windmill exists today because your goal was clear already 40 years ago – a very unique project as I see it

•    In 1998 I was ask to build up education for our technicians, primarily here in Denmark

•    When today we tell all our students about the history of Wind Turbines – we give information in all our training centres about the Tvind Wind Turbine and its long and great history

•    We have always been welcome here, and the same goes for our customers and our own technicians – Dear Britta and Allan, thank you very much for your never failing big hospitality – I hope very much that our good cooperation may continue

•    After our students have been visiting your wind turbine, we always have an enriching dialogue about the various technologies the Tvind Windmill is composed by compared to the ones we used, the ones we use today, and the ones we will see in our new products

•    Summing up – You started an exciting development 40 years ago – for many years you were far ahead of everyone else, this was good, then we had something to catch up with – now you are a living proof that through great courage and belief in what you do, it is possible to transcend limits, achieve important changes and results

•    I would like very much to wish you and the Tvind Windmill the best of winds for the next many years, and I sincerely hope that it will continue to produce unpolluted energy to the joy and benefit of everyone here in Tvind. It is also important for my own understanding of alternative energy and wind power in Denmark