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26 September, 2020

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New Finnish facility will be able test drive systems up to 15MW

03 January, 2020

Yaskawa Electric is making a “significant” investment to build a centre for testing large drives at its Yaskawa Environmental Energy / The Switch business in Finland. The centre will be one of the largest of its kind and will be capable of testing entire drivetrains, including motors, generators, frequency converters, transformers and auxiliary equipment. Initially, it will be able to test systems rated up to 15MW, but there are plans for a second phase that will be able to handle even larger drives as well as medium-voltage systems.

Yaskawa’s manufacturing and testing operation in Lappeenranta, Finland, dates back to 2014 when it acquired The Switch, which specialised in large permanent magnet machines and power conversion systems, and had originally been set up as a spin-off from Vacon and several other local companies. In 2016, Yaskawa added Wärtsilä’s marine drives business to the operation, and the site now produces systems mainly for renewable energy, high-speed and marine applications.

“The test centre is very important for us,” says Jukka-Pekka Mäkinen, president and CEO of Yaskawa Environmental Energy / The Switch. “It will allow us to test 15MW and higher converter and machine powers. This is the way the market is evolving, with ever-increasing powers in offshore wind and the propulsion of marine vessels.”

“The centre supports the key industries that we’ve chosen to work with, as their demand for larger and larger drivetrains keeps growing,” adds Matti Nikkinen, general manager of the business.

Yaskawa’s new centre for testing large drive systems will be one of the world’s biggest

As well as the testing facility, the new building will expand Yaskawa’s production capacity for renewable and marine systems. The centre is due to be ready by the end of February.




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