Interview of the head of the SK GROUP for the Russian Wind Industry Association – Hydrogen technology solutions

Interview of the head of the SK GROUP for the Russian Wind Industry Association

We continue the cycle of conversations with the heads of member companies of the Russian Wind Industry Association. Today our guest is Maxim Savitenko, director of SK–Trade, who believes that we live in an interesting time when “a window of opportunity has opened.” Let’s talk about the situation in the company and in the industry, as well as about hydrogen and logistics projects in the field of wind energy.

– Maxim, our first question will be about the mood in the company: how does business feel in the difficult conditions of the current agenda? How do sanctions affect the implementation of the company’s projects?

– The situation is certainly not easy, the conditions have changed. Our customers, for the most part, were foreign companies. Projects were planned outside the Russian Federation, but conditions have changed. At first, our employees were worried, they thought there would be cuts. But we not only did not fire people, but also expanded the staff. We took advantage of the current situation and, together with the Indian company Sea Master (Goodrich Line), opened a container service along the North-South corridor. Many have announced this corridor, but our company is currently the only one that transports cargo in linear containers without overloading. The delivery time is 40-45 days. Currently, this is a good indicator. We are optimistic about the future!

– Tell us about the company’s participation in wind energy projects? What was done in 2021, in 2022?

Basically, it was fruitful work with Siemens Gamesa at the Azov wind farm. Our task is regular transportation for a large Russian manufacturer of wind power plants, a subsidiary of Rosatom. Delivery services are provided within the framework of the state program “Energy Development”. We carry out transportation twice a week since 2019. During 2021, the upper sections of the wind turbine supports were transported. The transportation route passed through the territory of the south of Russia with key points at the construction sites of wind farms in the Stavropol Territory, in Volgograd, Volgodonsk, Taganrog.

– A year ago, SK Trade announced its new projects in the field of hydrogen energy. What has already been done in this direction?

We have completed all the planned work (R&D and Research) and received the expected results. We have developed concepts for the use of hydrogen for remote settlements. At the beginning of February, a plan for international cooperation with the Slovak Scientific University was agreed. Of course, the situation has changed a little, but new opportunities have opened up for Russian companies. We have accelerated the pace. We have completed the second stage of the competition in the MEI for the best work on hydrogen topics. Our project was nominated for the ECO-TECH LEADER contest. We presented our project for the Archipelago 2022 in Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, where we participated at the invitation of the Sakhalin Oblast administration. We work with specialized organizations.

– One of the most burning topics in the conditions of sanctions is the import and creation of new logistics supply chains. Tell us about how you manage to cope with the situation? Are there any new solutions for the company’s customers?

– We have opened a new container service from India via Iran. Container service for the delivery of goods from India, Bangladesh, the Middle East, Pakistan and Southeast Asian countries. The transportation route passes through Iran and then through the Caspian Sea to the Russian port of Astrakhan. Our competitors have at least three overloads from one vehicle to another along the water route. Our service allows you to avoid overloading cargo in transit ports from one container to another, which reduces the risk of damage to it. The cargo loaded and sealed in India arrives in transit to the port of Astrakhan under the same seal!

– RAVI has an international forum on wind energy ahead. Are you planning to take part in it? What are you planning to show and offer to the industry?

–We plan to share the experience of using hydrogen in thermal power engineering. Sooner or later there will be a question with the drives. Now, they mainly expect to use high-power batteries. We believe that with the right approach, it is possible to link environmental, climate and economic issues into a single concept. This is in short. We will tell you more in December, at the RAVIFORUM’2022!