France

France

SKF eyes offshore market

SWEDEN: Swedish bearing manufacturer SKF is targeting the French offshore market and is developing new designs for slewing bearings at its Avallon factory in central France.

The aim is to improve the seals and to limit corrosion by treating the surface with innovative materials, thereby reducing maintenance and increasing the component's lifetime.

SKF is working with its major customers, such as Areva, to qualify the new design, with a view to qualifying as one of the suppliers for the six offshore projects either awarded or under tender in France.

One of SKF's main competitors is Rollix, the world leader in blade and yaw bearings, which has been in the offshore market since the beginning.

The company has produced prototype bearings for Alstom's 6MW Haliade machine, Siemens' 6MW and Vestas' 8MW turbines, and is also hoping to be selected as supplier for at least some of the pre-series units.

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