Power & Energy Solutions

The premier renewable energy publication

Words: Kristian Holm, VP Renewables & Utilities at Kongsberg Digital A typical wind turbine is equipped with a huge number of sensors, signal processors, and other types of monitoring equipment to ensure that it maintains its autonomous operations. These data points provide a myriad of data which can be used to optimise the operation of the turbine, cutting maintenance costs dramatically. Usually, sensor data are used to maintain normal turbine operation. Temperature sensors reduce or stop the wind turbine if the oil temperature in the gearbox exceeds a set permissible limit. Vibration sensors stop the turbine if the vibrations surpass a set permissible limit. However, these sensors do not simply maintain operations; they add a host of other options to the wind turbine, and these can be used for operational excellence. Did you know that in less than a second a single wind turbine can forward up to 1500 data signals that provide information about the turbine status? If you are really smart, you’ll use this information to define the current condition of the turbine. And if you are really, really smart, you’ll use it to predict the future condition or the remaining useful life of the turbine. Moreover, since wind turbines hold

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PES brings you Jan De Nul’s experience of constructing the Tahkoluoto wind farm. The geographical location, the elements and the difficult terrain all posed different types of challenges. Previous knowledge gained on other ventures, suitable equipment and engineering skills were crucial to the success of this project. Possible ice and rocky soil: these were the conditions in which Jan De Nul Group installed the very first Finnish Offshore Wind Farm, Tahkoluoto. It is named after the port nearby, meaning ‘islet of the grindstones.’ In fact it was hard diabase bedrock below the seabed and a layer of moraine clay and boulders of different sizes on top of it. Being the remains of scraping glaciers in previous glaciation periods, it was a challenging environment in which to construct a wind farm, able to withstand the severe Finnish winters. None of the classical monopile driving methods, such as the one Jan De Nul Group used to construct the Belgian offshore wind farm Nobelwind, could be used here, in the Gulf of Bothnia, because of the soil conditions. An atypical design and construction of the wind turbine foundations was necessary. The only option was to place ballasted foundations on a prepared seabed. This was certainly no practice

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Auctions are becoming the standard instrument for granting state support in almost all European markets. In economic terms, this is the right step to take as it subjects renewables to market forces and rewards the most efficient projects. This was evident in the latest UK Government Contract for Difference (CfD) auction round, designed to support renewable energy projects being delivered in UK waters. One of the winners in the latest CfD auction round, September 2017, was innogy’s Triton Knoll offshore wind farm, located off England’s east coast. PES invited Richard Sandford, innogy Director of Offshore Investment & Asset Management, to give us an insight into this offshore project. ‘Triton Knoll’s auction success confirms the excellent work we have done in recent years, and proved that we can successfully hold our own in a very competitive market environment,’ Richard said. ‘Thanks to our extensive know-how in the development as well as the construction and operation of complex offshore projects, as well as our varied research and development activities we have succeeded in further reducing the costs for offshore wind energy in the UK.’ The industry pulling together to reduce costs and drive innovation innogy’s 860 megawatt Triton Knoll offshore project was allocated a CfD

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Words: Wouter Slob, Tender & Concepts Engineer, Huisman, the Netherlands The development of current and future offshore wind farms is picking up with wind installation contractors further optimising their toolboxes for efficient installation of offshore wind turbines. Up to now the jack-up vessel has been the platform of choice for installation of wind turbines; providing a stable platform, which when jacked up, uses a crane which reaches high enough to install the nacelle of the wind turbines. Building larger size jack-ups is a costly affair; the Foldable Offshore Crane offers a crane solution, which can increase the installation capabilities of such an asset, offering the same effective lift height with a shorter crane, compared to conventional fixed boom cranes while increasing the payload capacity. With the ever increasing size of wind turbines and the need to make efficient use of the stable platform provided by jack-up vessels, it is invaluable to be able to increase the lifting envelope of the crane, both in height, width and load. This can result in a vessel layout on which a crane boom extends far beyond the main vessel dimensions. In this setup the boom is largely unsupported during transit conditions, resulting in unwanted fatigue wear. The

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In 2002 the first ever offshore high voltage substation was delivered by HSM Offshore. This was under an EPCI contract from Eltra/Energinet, for the Horns Rev A project, off the Danish West coast. Things have gone from strength to strength since then, as this report to PES shows. Earlier this year the company signed the EPCI contracts for the TenneT TSO B.V. Borssele Alpha and Beta Substations. It really is remarkable to see the growth in transformer capacity lead to larger topsides and substructures. Lately we have also seen further increases in inter array and export voltages, as well as significant growth in the supply scope for EPCI contracts. The Horns Rev A Substation featured a transformer capacity of 160 MW and topside weight of 1,100 mt and was placed on a multiple pile foundation. The Asian Hercules II floating sheerlegs and the IB 909 jack-up were used for the installation. In 2007 there was another EPCI contract for the same customer, for a 250 MW Substation, featuring 1,300 mt topside and this time, with a jacket weighing 1,000 mt, the installation of both were undertaken by the Matador 3 floating sheerlegs. The 325 MW Thornton Bank Substation was HSM’s first Substation project in

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A PES exclusive from Steve Sawyer, GWEC Secretary General. This is his perspective on the options for a world using 100% renewable energy, based on research and years of experience in our industry. Ever since the oil shocks of the 1970s, and the early emergence of commercial wind turbines, solar hot water heaters, and the first solar PV panels, there has been speculation about what it would take to completely wean ourselves from fossil fuels. As far back as 1975 Danish physicist Bent Sørensen published a paper looking at a 100% renewable energy system for Denmark1. The visionary Dr. Amory Lovins came up with the term ‘soft energy path’ in 1976 to describe a future where energy efficiency and renewables gradually replace a centralized energy system based on fossil fuels and nuclear power. After the emergence of the threat of human-induced climate change in the late 1980s, the discussion got a bit more serious. Both solar and wind technologies had progressed somewhat during the intervening decade and a half, but were still expensive and small. The first fossil fuel free energy scenario was published by Greenpeace and the Stockholm Environmental Institute in 19932. But not even the most enthusiastic advocates of renewables would have

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Words: Steven Foong, Global Maritime This article will look at the marine operations standards and guidelines that are emerging; areas that need to be considered in putting in place such standards; and how it is also incumbent on the marine providers themselves to put the necessary mechanisms in place internally. There’s no doubt that offshore wind is on the increase in Europe, Asia and the United States. Bloomberg New Energy Finance, an energy research organization, predicts that the world’s offshore wind-generation capacity will quadruple by 2025. The size of wind turbines is also increasing at such a rate that turbines with a capacity of up to 15MW are likely to be installed in the near future, according to the Chief Executive of Renewable UK, the UK trade association. The European Wind Energy Association also estimates that between 20 GW and 40 GW of offshore wind energy capacity will be operating in the European Union by 2020. Yet, just as the industry is continuing to grow, so do the necessary marine standards need to improve to ensure safe and effective operations. Current standards & guidelines So what current marine operations standards and guidelines are being used? While such standards and guidelines in offshore wind were perhaps slow to take

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Words: Scott Starr, Firetrace International, Marketing Director Wind turbine fire protection: investing to protect the bottom line. Fire is the second leading cause of accidents in wind turbines after blade failure1, with the average overall cost of a wind turbine fire being around $4.5m2. Given that $112.5bn was ploughed in to wind power globally in 20163, wouldn’t it be prudent to invest a little more of that in fire suppression? When a fire occurs the typical action is simply to wait for it to burn out. This can cause significant damage leading to thousands of dollars of repair costs, plus revenue losses as a result of downtime. To illustrate, a single 2.5-3MW commercial scale wind turbine is valued at approximately $3-$4m4, with the value of the output averaging $2,8005 per day. It’s clear, therefore, that the financial impact of even a minor fire, which can still cause weeks of downtime, can be significant - the average total cost of a wind turbine fire is $4.5m6. Causes There are generally three main causes of wind turbine fires: mechanical failure, electrical malfunction and lightning strikes. A small fire can accelerate quickly in a nacelle that comprises highly flammable resin fiberglass. Internal insulation in the nacelle, which

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Words: Matthias Brandt, Board Director, Deutsche Windtechnik The global wind energy market has always been subject to constant change, but it has rarely changed as rapidly as it is right now. Political realities are evolving, and they are forcing the market to produce results based on one clear objective: absolute cost reduction. Increasing cost pressure is forcing market participants to take action In 2025, the first German offshore wind farms will be connected to the grid without the benefit of any subsidies whatsoever. In Spain, the remuneration of 4.3 cents for onshore wind is shaking up everything that was considered to be reliable up till now. The last onshore tender also put Germany at 4.45 cents. The continuous acquisitions within the industry are creating new structures. In order to maintain or even increase their competitiveness, the various market participants need to work together closely. This also applies to the heterogeneous market for maintenance. The European wind energy markets differ from each other in many respects. Economic conditions and national political frameworks directly affect and control wind energy. In Spain, for example, subsidisation has been withdrawn entirely. This means that the wind energy market conditions here are completely different than in Germany. In turn, the Spanish

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Words: Ignacio Serrada and Alfonso Hernández, members of Offshore and Modular Department By the end of October, the first shipment of transition pieces (TP) for the MERKUR offshore wind project had been completed. The brief was to take full responsibility for organising the transportation and associated engineering, to ship these components from the manufacturer’s premises to the hub port for the transfer of TPs to the installation vessel. COORDINADORA, in charge of the engineered transportation, is thrilled to share this stunning case study exclusively with PES. The challenge came from an established customer IDESA-WINDAR, the joint company in the DANIEL ALONSO Group, they were awarded the order to manufacturer 66 transition pieces for the Merkur Project. They were manufactured in their Aviles facilities and had to be delivered to GeoSea, part of the DEME Group, in Eemshaven Port who was the main contractor. The first task was to select the most suitable vessel to match the obvious competitive requirements and the technical reliability needed to carry this crucial cargo, especially with regards to the lifting capacity of ship’s cranes. Thus, COORDINADORA, an expert in the shipping sector for over 35 years, prepared a particular RFQ for the ship owners to bid for the necessary

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