LM Wind Power Completes Hitachi Blade Testing
LM Wind Power has completed installation and testing of a 66.5-meter wind turbine blade, ordered by Hitachi Ltd., for an offshore application.
LM Wind Power and Hitachi commenced installation of the blade in 2016, with a goal of optimizing Hitachi’s 5.2 MW platform to operate effectively in lower-wind sites.
The new LM Wind Power blades will now enable Hitachi to offer its 5.2 MW wind turbine with a rotor size of 136 meters. The 66.5-meter blades have been tested on a wind turbine of the Kashima Port Fukashiba Wind Power Station in east Japan since October of last year.
The blades were produced in LM Wind Power’s blade manufacturing facility in Jiangyin, China. LM Wind Power was recently acquired by GE.
Deepwater Deploys Aconex Platform
To manage project information during the design and construction of the Block Island Wind Farm, Deepwater Wind turned to Aconex Ltd., an Australia-based provider of a platform connecting teams on construction and engineering projects.
According to Aconex, close collaboration among the various stakeholders, contractors and suppliers was critical to ensure that all components – foundations, cable systems, turbines and blades – came together as planned for the U.S.’ first offshore wind farm.
“Design and construction needed to be carefully and closely coordinated,” explains Deepwater Wind’s president, Chris van Beek. “Document control was essential in making sure we delivered the project within budget and on time.”
For example, he says, some design files the company shared with contractors were “very large.”
“Uploading, transmitting and updating these files on Aconex was very straightforward and efficient,” he continues. “The platform was a great solution for executing design reviews and other complex processes within relatively short time frames.”
“Deepwater Wind has earned a reputation as a leading developer in the emerging U.S. market for offshore wind power,” adds Frank Kopas, general manager for the Americas at Aconex. “We congratulate them on the successful commissioning of the Block Island Wind Farm, and we look forward to supporting the company with similar projects in the future.”
DONG Installing Burbo Bank Battery System
Using a combination of wind and battery power, DONG Energy is planning to offer frequency response from its Burbo Bank Offshore Wind Farm.
The 2 MW battery system, set to be installed by the end of the year, will enhance the capability of the 90 MW wind farm. According to DONG Energy, it will be the first time an offshore wind farm is integrated with a battery system to deliver frequency response to the grid.
The battery system will be supplied by ABB. The Burbo Bank Offshore Wind Farm, which has been fully operational since 2007, is capable of supplying up to 80,000 U.K. homes, says DONG Energy.
Richard Smith, head of network capability (electricity) for National Grid, says, “As Great Britain’s energy mix changes, we know that ensuring a safe and stable supply of energy into the future will require more flexible services. I’m looking forward to seeing how the DONG Energy solution of storage connected to the offshore wind farm will provide services to help us respond to day-to-day operational challenges and maintain the frequency of 50 Hz on Great Britain’s electricity system.”
Canadian Firm Gets Nod For Offshore ‘Floatel’
Bridgemans Services Group (BSG), a privately owned Canadian company providing floating accommodations for industrial workforces, has entered an agreement with MHI Vestas to provide full-service “floatel” accommodations and CTV boat landing services for a Belgian offshore wind farm.
Having recently undergone an extensive refurbishment, Bridgemans’ 142-meter MV Bluefort went into service on May 1 to accommodate construction and maintenance workers at an undisclosed project site in the North Sea off the coast of Belgium.
“We are very pleased to reintroduce the Bluefort after an extensive refit into the offshore accommodations market,” says BSG’s president, Brian Grange.
Featuring high-capacity storage facilities and 210 single ensuite cabins, the Bluefort can provide up to five months of uninterrupted service for accommodations and catering.
The refit, completed in 2016, included the renovation of all cabins and lounge, dining and common areas, along with upgrades to all mechanical, navigational, IT and operating systems, including enhanced Internet and TV services. The vessel has also been equipped with CTV boat landing and a helicopter pad for crew transfers. The vessel will be based in Europe.
Mesalands Uses Megger’s Testing Equipment
Megger, a Valley Forge, Pa.-based manufacturer of portable electrical testing equipment, has donated a Digital Low-Resistance Ohmmeter, the DLRO200 Microohmmeter, to Mesalands Community College.
According to the college, this new equipment is being used to enhance the curriculum and the hands-on training of the wind energy technology program at Mesalands in order to better prepare technicians for a career in this growing industry.
David S. Danner, director of U.S. distribution sales for Megger, has been working with Mesalands since 2008 to provide students in the wind energy technology program with up-to-date, high-quality electrical testing equipment.
“At the forefront of new technology and improved electrical service, Megger is pleased to be integrally involved with the educational process,” says Danner. “To the end, we are proud to donate the DLRO200, a leading-edge, low-resistance ohmmeter that promotes the highest quality in accuracy, reliability and, above all, safety.”
The college says the DLRO200 is a versatile piece of equipment that can provide test currents from 10 amps up to 200 amps. The electrical testing device is portable and weighs less than 33 pounds. The high-current capability and compact design make this equipment suitable for testing circuit breaker contacts, switch contacts, busbar joints or other applications for which high current is needed.
Andy Swapp, wind energy technology faculty at Mesalands, says the DLRO200 is used to test the installation of conductors during the commissioning of wind turbines. He states that the DLRO200 is also part of the maintenance plan of wind turbines and is used when an electrical problem is suspected. Swapp says he is appreciative of this donation and his wind energy students will greatly benefit from the use of this equipment.
“The DLRO200 is a valuable and highly specialized piece of equipment. Our students are using the DLRO200 donated by Megger to familiarize themselves with the equipment and to practice safety procedures,” Swapp says.
RES Deploying IdentiFlight Data
IdentiFlight International, an affiliate of Boulder Imaging, is deploying two mobile units of its IdentiFlight aerial detection system to a potential wind farm site in Washington State.
The mobile detection systems, purchased by Renewable Energy Systems Americas (RES), will be used to monitor and collect field data on eagle activity at the site.
“We have developed a mobile version of IdentiFlight to be used for field surveys by engineers, biologists, statisticians and academic stakeholders,” states Tom Hiester, president of IdentiFlight International. “Because these systems are easy to mobilize, install and power, they provide a cost-effective tool for the real-time monitoring and collection of data in areas where a permanent installation is not needed. The mobile IdentiFlight system is ruggedized and can operate in remote environments that would be challenging for round-the-clock human observation.”
The mobile IdentiFlight unit includes an imaging head with a wide field of view, as well as stereo vision sensors mounted on a telescoping tower and powered by a hybrid power system. It is installed on a trailer for use in remote and challenging locations, says the company.
“The biologists who work with RES are excited about the potential of the mobile IdentiFlight unit,” notes Brian Healer, RES’ vice president of development services. “The huge amount of data IdentiFlight collects will supplement the field biologist data, thus allowing for the most accurate view possible of eagle activity in the area.”
The mobile units are expected to begin collecting data in June and will be rotating among various stations for a year.
Facility To Offer Testing For Cold Climates
The RISE Research lnstitutes of Sweden is establishing a test center in which the global wind industry will be able to test equipment for cold climate conditions.
The Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN) and RISE have agreed to collaborate on the development and operation of the facility, which will be located in northern Sweden and operated by RISE.
According to RISE, the center will offer full-scale testing, research, verification and certification of new generations of wind turbines and subsystems in cold climates.
RISE says it already operates field facilities in cold conditions in Sweden and has a long history in measurement, testing and validation. Further, ECN has its own full-scale wind turbine test center and accredited measurement team with over 40 years of dedicated research and development in wind energy.
According to RISE’s Stefan Ivarsson, project manager, the specific location of the facility is to be determined.
FOCUS: Turbine Advancements
MHI Vestas Launches Massive Offshore Turbine
MHI Vestas has launched its massive V164-9.5 MW offshore wind turbine, built on the V164 platform and capable of powering 8,300 U.K. homes.
According to MHI Vestas, a 50/50 joint venture between Vestas Wind Systems and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, the turbine is equipped with 35-metric-ton, 80-meter blades. With a hub height of 105 meters and a tip height of 187 meters, the machine also has a 390-metric-ton nacelle that is 20 meters long, 8 meters wide and 8 meters high.
With a redesigned gearbox and cooling system upgrades from the V164-9.0 MW machine, the turbine also has a swept area of 21,124 square meters.
Notably, according to the company, the V164-9.5 MW reduces operational and maintenance costs by enabling customers to run fewer, larger turbines.
Last December, the machine broke a world record for production by a single wind turbine when it produced 216 MWh of power in a 24-hour period. The prototype was set up at the Osterild Wind Turbine Test Field in Denmark.
The launch comes as the offshore wind industry meets in London at Offshore Wind Energy 2017, hosted by WindEurope and Renewable UK.
Torben Hvid Larsen, chief technology officer of MHI Vestas, says, “I’m very proud of our team for their hard work in launching our next-generation turbine, the V164-9.5 MW. With only minimal design changes, including a redesigned gearbox and cooling system upgrades, this turbine continues the legacy of the proven V164 platform and is available now to all MHI Vestas customers.”
FOCUS: Turbine Advancements
Suzlon Touts Load Factor In New Turbine
Suzlon’s S111 120-meter 2.1 MW wind turbine has achieved an approximately 42% plant load factor (PLF) in its first 12 months of operation at the Jamanwada site in the Kutch district of Gujarat, India. The prototype was commissioned in March.
According to Suzlon, the 42% PLF is 20% higher than the 35% PLF achieved by the S97 120-meter turbine in its first 12 months of operation at the same location.
The S111 is the latest addition to Suzlon’s 2.1 MW platform and features doubly fed induction generator technology. With a swept area of 9,852 square meters, the S111 120-meter is designed to optimally harness wind resources at higher altitudes – in turn, making low-wind sites viable.
“It is a proud moment for us to witness the prototype of S111 120 m 2.1 MW turbine deliver ~42 percent PLF,” comments J.P. Chalasani, CEO of Suzlon Group. “It has successfully generated yield of 7.66 million kWh over the last 12 months. With its reduced levelized cost of energy, cost-effective design and superior performance, S111 120 m will unlock unviable sites and set new benchmarks in the Indian wind industry.”
FOCUS: Turbine Advancements
Senvion Enhances Turbine Performance
Senvion has announced new after-sales service products for the North American market: the Senvion Rotor Blade Ice Detection System and Turbine Control Upgrades with its features Dynamic Yaw and Smart Turbine Start.
According to the company, all products are based on Senvion’s extensive data analysis activities and customer feedback, and they increase the annual energy production (AEP), deliver a higher return on investment and lower the levelized cost of energy.
As reported, the Senvion Rotor Blade Ice Detection System detects ice on the blades and automatically starts up the turbine when the rotor is ice-free, with no visual inspection required for the restart. This leads to an extended uptime, lower maintenance costs and a higher energy output. The Ice Detection System uses fiber-optic sensors to determine the thickness of the ice.
Dynamic Yaw improves the angle by which the turbine is allowed to point out of the wind, thus increasing AEP and reducing loads on the turbine. Smart Turbine Start uses a self-learning algorithm to find the optimal start-up wind speed at a given site.
Hendrik van Ritter, senior vice president of service at Senvion, says, “Our service products are the result of listening to customer requirements, substantial analysis of turbine data retrieved from our global fleet, and applying the latest technology insights from Senvion’s new product developments into our installed base. This allows Senvion to revisit turbine configurations and design envelopes, with the objective to improve the power curve, resulting in higher energy production output.”
To date, the company has an installed capacity of more than 2,600 MW across North America, which includes hundreds of turbines across the Pacific Northwest, California, Alaska, Indiana, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Oklahoma and Minnesota in the U.S. In Canada, Senvion turbines constitute 10% of the country’s wind energy capacity.