Power & Energy Solutions

The premier renewable energy publication

Innovative sensor technologies, advanced modelling and new business models are all corner stones in how ZF Wind Power is digitalizing the manufacturing business. For ZF Wind Power digitalization and the Internet of Things (IoT) is an integrated part of this transformation. For a long time, the wind power industry has been among the front-runners when it comes to connectivity of products and analyzing data in order to optimize products and processes. However, the challenges and benefits have mainly been left to OEMs and turbine owners, with limited feedback to component suppliers. As the leading transmission supplier in the wind industry, ZF Wind Power is now stepping up the ambition of data insights, taking a leading position on product risk commitments and launching ground-breaking sensing technology used to control speed and drivetrain torque. Thanks to digitalization, ZF connected gearboxes can automatically sense the best way to optimize energy generation and improve turbine economics for any wind site conditions. A new control strategy with the focus on drivetrain torque ZF Wind Power, as a business unit of ZF Friedrichshafen AG, has extensive experience of delivering transmissions across industries. More than a decade ago a paradigm shift in drivetrain design for automotive changed how gearboxes were

Read More

Does a bottlenose dolphin change its ranging movement because of a wind turbine? Or a razorbill change its migration route? How do human beings change behaviours with an offshore wind farm nearby? PES brings you a pioneering scientific research programme from Vattenfall, which aims to answer these questions and more. Four projects have initially been selected to receive a share of the €3mn Scientific Research and Monitoring Fund which is the brainchild of Swedish energy company Vattenfall. The projects will be based at Vattenfall’s European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC) in Aberdeen Bay. Adam Ezzamel, Project Director for the EOWDC, said they felt such a programme represented an opportunity that was too good to miss. ‘These projects will be carried out in a real-time environment as part of the largest-scale offshore wind programme of its kind. Conducting this research at the EOWDC is an unmissable chance to gain hitherto unknown knowledge of the environmental effects of offshore wind developments. ‘Not only will this programme place Scotland at the forefront of research and development in the sector and reinforce its position as a renewable energy powerhouse, it will inform industry policy-making in Europe and beyond.’ The 11-turbine EOWDC is Scotland’s largest offshore wind test and

Read More

Gerry Lalonde, CEO, Orenda Energy Solutions, tells PES how he feels wind energy could be exchanged from one location to another. This is certainly food for thought and could make a big difference to small turbine owners, or perspective owners with no space near their current location. One of the chief concerns facing the small/medium wind energy industry is a geographical one, based purely on supply and demand. Imagine a business located in the middle of an urban area that wishes to be self-sustaining with its own ‘green’ electricity supply. If the business is located in an area where there is little or no wind and local planning laws preclude them from siting a small turbine on the property, is there not a conversation to be had with Government, which leads to a relaxing of the rules whereby any business can buy and erect a turbine on a ‘wind-friendly’ landscape, in another part of the country and have access to the equivalent amount of generated energy by these turbines from the grid? Is this not a classic case of supply not being efficiently matched to demand? Current legislation prohibits an energy consumer based on the South Coast of England, to purchase a wind turbine

Read More

As renewable energy adoption grows worldwide, major utilities increasingly rely on wind power to serve homes and businesses with emission-free, clean electricity. Because of this growing interest in cleaner energy sources, the wind industry is experiencing a period of significant growth worldwide, exceeding 500 gigawatts and employing more than 1.2 million people. This growth has increased focus on issues like the equipment’s sensitivity to extreme environmental factors, subsequent power interruptions and revenue loss, increased maintenance, and maintenance-related safety risks. To keep up with this growing demand, operators must continue to stay ahead of potential challenges. Like all power sources, wind turbines are vulnerable to harsh weather conditions and require fail-safe operating systems such as emergency pitch units, commonly referred to as EPUs, which help safely halt turbine operation. As a result, turbine operators and owners are increasingly depending on electrical-based pitch control systems to perform this function. Traditional EPU (emergency power unit) In periods of total power failure, the EPU is equipped with an emergency power supply to return the blades to a safe position and allow the turbine to shut down effectively. These systems have typically relied on batteries to perform this function. Because of batteries’ electrochemical nature, they are prone to

Read More

With the productive use of renewable energy it is possible to accelerate clean energy access to rural areas. The Alliance for Rural Electrification (ARE) explains how to PES. 1.1 billion people live without access to electricity and approximately 87% of these live in rural areas characterised by remoteness and sparse population density, where the extension of national grids is often technically difficult, costly and inefficient.1 In contrast, decentralised electricity generation and distribution through smaller and more local systems such as mini-grids and stand-alone systems, also called off-grid systems, are in most cases the more competitive solution. While off-grid renewable energy is used for various consumption purposes such as lighting, access to information, comfort and entertainment, it is not sufficient by itself to trigger development in rural areas: the usage of energy should be aligned in such a way that it will trigger economic development through enhancement of income generation for the local population. Hence, the Productive Use of Renewable Energy (PURE) could be defined as “agricultural, commercial and industrial activities, powered by renewable energy sources, which generate income.”2 Triple bottom line sustainable business The Alliance for Rural Electrification, which is the only industry partner association of the United Nation’s Sustainable Energy for All Initiative (SEforAll),

Read More

Our industry continually strives to get better, smarter energy. Research and development means there are always new innovations on the market. PES brings you the latest in fast response sensors from EKO, for measuring solar radiation due to various cloud conditions. This plays an important part in the quality of converted energy from solar devices. Even though the solar radiation incident at the top of the Earth’s atmosphere is relatively constant, the amount of solar radiation arriving at the Earth’s surface is extremely variable. It depends on the location, date and time of the day, and on the atmospheric conditions. It is well known that absorption and scattering by gases, aerosols, and water vapour present in the atmosphere have attenuating effects on the incoming radiative power. It is also well known that the attenuation of the incoming solar radiation caused by clouds is larger than any other atmospheric component. Another atmospheric effect has gained interest recently, while being counter intuitive – clouds can also cause enhancement of the incoming solar radiation. Partially cloudy skies with broken clouds lead to multiple scattering and radiation reflection. At times this may result in increased irradiance from a portion of the sky exceeding the expected irradiance value

Read More

PES brings you two great show previews, Solar Power International (SPI) and Energy Storage International (ESI), September 10th to 13th 2017, Las Vegas and European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition (EU PVSEC) September 25th to 29th 2017, Munich Germany. Hopefully we will see you at one of them. Fusing solar energy and technology for the future The cost to install solar has dropped by more than 70% since 2010, which has helped make the industry more ubiquitous throughout the world. The United States is no exception. Nearly 260,000 Americans work in solar, more than double the number employees compared to 2012 - at more than 9,000 companies in every U.S. state. This has led the industry to expand into new markets and deploy thousands of systems nationwide. With nearly 1.4 million solar installations in the U.S., there are projections that the market will hit 2 million installations by 2018, and 4 million by 2022. This has helped the success of North America’s largest solar & energy storage trade show, Solar Power International (SPI) and Energy Storage International (ESI). This September, over 18,000 energy professionals and 650 exhibitors from more than 110 countries will make Las Vegas their home for three days to experience

Read More

Our second preview is of the European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition (EU PVSEC 2017). Once again this will be an exciting event with the possibility of seeing the latest innovations, meeting up with the key players in our industry and a golden networking opportunity. Conference: 25 – 29 September 2017 Exhibition: 25 – 28 September 2017 RAI Convention & Exhibition Centre, Amsterdam, The Netherlands EU PVSEC is a fixed appointment in the calendar of PV experts – and has been for decades. In the 33rd edition from 25 to 29 September the global PV R&D community will meet in Amsterdam to discuss the latest developments and innovations. Research and technology innovations, as well as policy and strategy framework conditions – the future of photovoltaics will be shaped by a unique alliance between researchers, industry, and politics at the EU PVSEC 2017. Over 1250 abstracts have been received for the Call for Papers of the 33rd European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition (EU PVSEC). Arno Smets, General Chairman of the upcoming EU PVSEC 2017 commented, ‘I am very happy with the large number of abstracts submitted. The submissions demonstrate that the interest in photovoltaics keeps on growing.’ The abstracts were received from corresponding authors in 70

Read More

Constructing offshore wind farms can be a tricky business. In particular, the current generation of offshore wind projects because they are moving further from shore into deeper, less sheltered water. This makes absolute sense when you consider it from the perspective of the soon-to-be proud owners. After all, you want to put your wind farm where the wind blows strongest, on the most continuous basis, to generate the electricity and the revenue. However, from the perspective of the construction side of things, putting the turbines in the water and connecting them up is getting trickier and demands a new type of approach. Siem Offshore Contractors have revolutionised the installation of inter array cables for offshore wind farms, in bad weather and harsh conditions through their innovative, next generation, Siem Duo. This consists of the cable lay vessel Siem Aimery along with the installation support vessel Siem Moxie. However, to understand just how revolutionary this solution is, you need to understand a few things….

Read More

This summer, the largest and most spectacular global gathering of the offshore wind industry takes place in London. PES brings you an appetiser and we hope to see you there. On June 6-8, WindEurope and RenewableUK are joining forces to host Offshore Wind Energy 2017, the world’s largest offshore wind conference and exhibition. Taking place in London’s magnificent ExCeL Exhibition Centre, this event will attract more than 10,000 visitors and play host to over 400 exhibitors, representing over 20 countries. As offshore wind begins to stake a claim to ever more of the globe’s energy mix, the decision to host this event in London was easy: the UK is the world’s leading offshore nation and is setting a national example that industry leaders will seek to emulate around the world in the busy years to come. Offshore Wind Energy 2017 will seek to build on the tremendous momentum achieved in recent years by offshore wind power: wind is now the fastest growing energy source in the world, and offshore wind has recently been a hotbed of innovation and ambition. Now is the time for industry insiders to solidify the goals and vision of this expanding sector. WindEurope CEO Giles Dickson says

Read More