Power & Energy Solutions

The premier renewable energy publication

PES met up with Rogier Reinders, Global Marketing Director at The Dow Chemical Company, to learn about the positive effect the ownership of Dow Corning’s silicones business will have on the PV industry and the customers of both entities. PES: Welcome back to PES Solar/PV China magazine. Thanks for talking with us. It’s been a while, so would you like to remind our readers about the background of your organisation and any changes there have been since we last spoke? Rogier Reinders: On June 1, 2016, The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE: Dow) announced the successful completion of the transaction to restructure the ownership of Dow Corning. Dow is now the 100 percent owner of Dow Corning’s silicones business, which had revenues greater than $4.5 billion in 2015. Dow Corning’s silicones technology and product platform bring a highly complementary and growth enabling new chemistry to Dow that is aligned to the company’s strategy, to go narrower and deeper in attractive industry segments, where Dow is already a leader today. This is excellent news for customers of both Dow and Dow Corning. Bringing together the two companies will drive exciting opportunities for new product offerings, increased geographic reach and expanded R&D power, to bring innovations to

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PES takes a look at the latest way one company is offering a way to save time, money and be ecologically responsible, by using a new extrusion method. BREYER’s extrusion system “CellProtect” allows the production of low shrinkage EVA encapsulation film at high production speed – on top - no energy consuming annealing and no interlayer film makes the production economic and energy saving Photovoltaic (PV) systems are used to convert sunlight into electricity. Energy will continue to be a catalyst for global economic growth and prosperity and the power of the sun is at the heart of the revolution in renewable energy. The global PVB market is forecast to grow by a minimum of 10% in the next few years. According to a research report from November 2016 by Fraunhofer ISI Freiburg, Germany, the Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of PV installations was 42 % between 2000 to 2015. Concerning PV module production in 2015, China and Taiwan hold the lead with a share of 67 %, followed by Rest of Asia-Pacific and Central Asia (ROAP/CA) with 14%. Europe contributed with a share of 5 % (6% in 2014); USA/CAN contributed 3 %. In the same way the demand for encapsulant material is

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All power storage systems allow you to store energy for later use as needed, regardless of when the power was generated. However, differences in functionality and technology have considerable impacts on the actual use and economic efficiency of such systems. PES brings you the latest up to date information to help you make your choice. In conventional power storage systems, cells are connected in series. Since it was technically impossible to change this until recently, this concept has remained unchallenged for too long. The possibility of connecting storage system cells entirely in parallel marks a real paradigm shift for power storage. “To understand the extent to which parallel connection has affected and indeed improved the design, operation and performance of a power storage system, you need to look at the numerous problems posed by series connection,” explains Wolfram Walter, the inventor and developer of parallel connection in power storage systems and Managing Director of ASD Automatic Storage Device GmbH (Umkirch, Germany). “Because the fact that all of these problems are solved in one go really underlines the innovative advance made here.”

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New multi-megawatt solar installations are growing rapidly, which is great news for the environment and the economy. With that growth comes falling prices, both for power purchase agreements (PPAs) and solar gear including PV modules, inverters and other equipment. But what about the people reading this article who got into large scale solar earlier in the game, with PV plants now between five and ten years old, or perhaps even older? How are your PV assets performing now? It’s quite likely there is significant untapped potential in those assets that could provide you increased returns on your existing portfolio by boosting yield and decreasing operating costs. There is sound science behind how you can do so, the application of which will have some very significant economic benefits. Turning your central inverter into a string inverter One of the great debates in the solar industry at the moment is the one over central versus string inverters. Settling this debate is beyond the scope of this article. What is in the scope of this article is explaining that one of the arguments string inverter advocates make in favor of their application is their more granular maximum power point tracking or MPPT. For those unfamiliar with

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Harald Hohlen, Senior Wind Measurement Specialist at ROMO Wind, caught up with PES to talk to us about the improvements in the iSpin technology and the Performance Transparency Project, which will provide data to the whole of the wind industry. PES: Welcome back to PES Wind magazine. Thanks for talking with us. For the benefit of our new readers, would you like to begin by explaining a little about the background of your organisation and how you currently serve the wind industry? Harald Hohlen: Thank you for this opportunity. ROMO Wind is a service provider with the focus on performance transparency and improvement. Our services are built around the unique iSpin spinner anemometer technology, which measures key performance. This is where the wind flow is predictable and can be reliably corrected by the spinner. Our initial services were based around the detection and correction of yaw misalignment. Now more and more, the iSpin system is being used as a precise and accurate measurement tool, for evaluating site conditions and turbine performance behaviour. PES: We have been hearing about your Performance Transparency Project, can you tell us what this is? HH: The Performance Transparency Project which we call PTP aims to demonstrate the ability of

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Proper and effective operation and maintenance (O&M) management of wind energy is crucial to the energy yield of the wind farm. Lowering the cost of O&M is becoming more of a challenge and at the same time, a necessity for the modern and competitive wind energy market. Daniel Perkowski, CEO at Wind Audit sp. z o.o., Szczecin, Poland shares his ideas with PES on how to achieve this. A wind turbine, as any complex high-tech device, should be adequately maintained in order to do its work safely and with maximum efficiency. Some good practices in maintenance management can reduce the overall cost of the O&M, meaning less lost energy production and to ensure that a wind power plant is in tip top technical condition. Regular preventive maintenance The regular service of wind turbines is the primary preventive thing to do. It is performed once or twice a year, depending on the manufacturer and type of wind power generator. During preventive maintenance services, there are things done, in accordance with maintenance service checklist. These include: hydraulic filters replacement, pressure measurement, battery exchange, electrical measurement and so on. As a result, the wind turbine is maintained at an appropriate level, which may or not be

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Synergies are better than my way or your way. It is an efficient combination and results in our way. The last years in the offshore wind industry, which is similar to oil and gas, have shown that each project and/or location has its own, individual logistic concept and needs an exclusively chartered vessel or even vessels. To reduce cost and increase efficiency this concept has to be questioned. Alternative solutions such as vessel pooling or shared logistic runs might be an alternative option to establish. First concepts are on the trial and wind park owners are willing to forward responsibilities to their suppliers having more clients and therefore the possibility to share vessel cost over a few projects. Looking back to the beginning of offshore wind, specialised vessels were rare and mostly found in the oil and gas industry. The high priced tonnage made it difficult for the wind farm owner to find an economical business plan in other words - the whole industry was pioneering its way through the tangle of the offshore wind jungle. Subsidised parks were developed and soon became the test areas for all kind of trials. Starting with simple environmental experiments, on site as well as onshore and with

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Six years ago, ZF Wind Power took the challenge to set the benchmark in the industry pioneering wind gearboxes to power the new giants of the sea. The project started with an early cooperation between the customer and ZF with one main focus: reliability. Dr. Dirk Strasser, Manager Wind Gearbox Design at ZF Wind Power, Witten, shares his reflections with PES, on the project from an engineering perspective and points out the resultant benefit for the customer.. Development projects for the wind industry usually are characterised by short development times and gearboxes developed to specification. The 8 MW development started with a different focus. A reliable drivetrain at competitive costs was the objective, with reliability being recognised as one of the most important contributors to the turbine’s competitiveness. Before starting detail design, ZF cooperated closely with the customer in order to cover all gearbox requirements in the interface specifications. This means, on the one hand, a sound mechanical design on the rotor side, delivering a mechanical torque of minimum 8,000 kNm whilst keeping parasitic loads small, and on the other hand, meeting mechanical and electrical requirements on the generator side prescribed by the integrated drivetrain layout.

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WAB is the leading business network for the wind industry in Germany’s northwest region and the nationwide contact partner for politics, media and industry for offshore wind power in the country. Projects such as “Inn2POWER” clearly show that WAB is also active in Europe, on behalf of its 350 members, in the wind energy sector. “We have a very heterogeneous membership structure. It covers every aspect of the wind industry, ranging from very small start-up businesses to research institutes and major energy suppliers,” said Andreas Wellbrock, managing director of WAB. WAB’s members are involved in project development, financing, insurance, manufacturing - foundation structures, towers, nacelles and rotor blades - logistics and installation, grid connection, service and operation as well as dismantling and repowering. WAB therefore is always able make up-to-date and first-hand information available to its members on current issues. A recent example of this is the network’s interest in wind-to-gas technology, the exploration of opportunities for its development and research on its market potential for the wind industry. The 5th WINDFORCE Baltic Sea conference was held in February this year in Tallinn, Estonia and proved a resounding success. “WAB is also present where exciting new markets are emerging. At its

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While German wind turbine manufacturers have become active in nearly all markets in the world, in Germany it is facing a profound upheaval. Now that renewable, decentralised energy transition technology has become a major pillar for power generation in this industrial nation. Matthias Zelinger, Managing Director of the Power Systems trade association and VDMA (German Mechanical Engineering Industry Association) gives PES the benefit of his insight. Since the beginning of the year the federal government has started organising the expansion of new installations by implementing a tendering system, following a major, international trend. This increases competition and cost pressure, along the process chain. At the same time, they are striving to achieve fair conditions on the world market and develop a new integrated energy system in Germany. The expansion of wind energy in Germany was very successful over the last three years. 2016 saw a capacity increase of approximately 4,600 megawatts onshore and 800 megawatts offshore. With more than two gigawatts going online, 2015 was a record year for offshore wind energy. The reason for this great leap was in fact due to a delay: the completion of a number of offshore grid connection points in 2015 meant that an unusually large

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