The Timken Co.’s new joint venture, Timken XEMC Bearings Co., broke ground on a new wind-energy plant that it will build in China. The new company will produce ultra-large-bore bearings for large-scale wind turbines using advanced technology to help China meet its demand for alternative energy. The venture’s other partner is Xiangtan Electric Manufacturing Co. A $38 million facility will manufacture high-performance bearings for the main shafts of wind turbines. These bearings play a role in improving the reliability of the generation of energy. Last week, Timken announced it will expand production at its Tyger River facility in Union, S.C., by shifting existing capacity to make ultra-large-bore bearings to serve demand from North American wind-turbine manufacturers.

Timken holds an 80% ownership stake in the joint venture. The new facility is located in the city of Xiangtan in China’s Hunan province. The bearings, which are expected to be available in 2010, are destined solely for China.