Timken Company announced on Dec. 9 a joint venture with Chinese heavy equipment manufacturer Xiangtan Electric Manufacturing Co. Ltd. to manufacture ultra-large-bore bearings for main rotor shafts of multi-megawatt wind turbines for the Chinese wind energy market. Timken will have an 80% stake in the joint venture.
Both companies intend to build a new $38 million facility at the Hunan, China-based Xiangtan Electric, which is scheduled to begin construction in 2008, for manufacturing main-shaft bearings for wind turbines.
Timken anticipates that the joint venture will contribute to China's aspiration of generating 30 million kilowatts of power from wind energy systems by 2020.
By merging Timken's expertise in alloy steel, power-transmission design, and precision manufacturing capabilities together with Xiangtan Electric's leadership in the Chinese market for heavy-equipment manufacturing, the companies believe that they are better positioned to serve the needs of China's rapidly growing wind energy industry.
Commenting on the agreement, Carlos Gutierrez, U.S. Secretary of Commerce, Gutierrez, said, "Timken's partnership in China will provide $100 million in exports, while also helping China expand alternative energy, wind power, which helps the planet." The agreement was revealed at a ceremony in Beijing attended by Secretary Gutierrez and Vice-Minister Jiang Zeng Wei from China's Ministry of Commerce.