Power & Energy Solutions

The premier renewable energy publication

Following the recent news, widely published in the industry and national press regarding a number of offshore wind farms, it seems that last year’s end of warranty inspections highlighted unprecedented amounts of offshore wind turbine, blade leading edge erosion, across several offshore wind farms in Europe. As the offshore wind industry enters the 2018 season blade repair campaigns, there is much to be considered. Early intervention is imperative for the quality and longevity of repairs. PES asked WTG to give us their view on this problem. It is an issue the industry has long been aware of and there are many initiatives in place looking to tackle the issue, such as the Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult’s Blade Leading Edge Erosion Programme. Is this the Benchmark for future blade inspection and Integrity management during warranty? The following extract applies: If the expected lifetime of the surface coating is less than the lifetime of the blade, suitable inspection and maintenance intervals should be specified. Inspection and maintenance intervals shall be planned to provide adequate assurance that no significant deterioration in the condition of the installation may arise in the interval. The design should take into account the practicability of carrying out inspections of relevant components

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Achieving the correct bolt pretension is essential in assuring bolted joint integrity. Bolted joints are critical when ensuring the safe operation of wind turbines or other similar bolted connections. In this context, ultrasonic measurement has proven to be a very accurate and cost-effective solution when installing new bolts, as well as when evaluating existing bolts as part of determining the lifespan of wind turbines. R&D explains why to PES. In recent years, wind energy has become an important source of electricity production. As with any other technology, wind turbines have a limit to their time in functional operation. Currently, wind turbines are designed to be efficient and reliable for 20 years, with the possibility of extending beyond that. Continuous inspection of wind turbines is important as it can maximise the turbines’ life expectancy as well as minimise the risk of failure. In this context, the importance of correct bolt pretension is frequently underestimated, as incorrect installation can increase the risk of partial or total failure in wind turbines, since these bolts hold critical components together in the turbine as well as the tower. A fully tightened bolted joint can sustain millions of load cycles without any problems, whereas a joint consisting of untightened

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Although wind power remains broadly powerful as a renewable resource, opposition to wind farms is nothing new. For supporters, wind seems to offer something for everyone: carbon-free electricity, construction and maintenance jobs, and competitive utility rates. Still, wind farms are not accepted by all, and criticism of new wind installations around the world has effectively stalled development of some projects and defeated others. Wind power production in the United States continues to increase, especially when local governments seek to generate more tax revenue, but despite the many environmental benefits, when residents organize and fight a project, they often succeed. Rural residents across America are increasingly rejecting the advancement of wind energy projects in their communities when given a chance. Arguments from wind farm opponents often focus on concerns about disruption of landscapes, noise, aesthetics, reduced property values, and bat and bird mortality. In rural states like Ohio and Minnesota, residents fear that large-scale wind farms will turn rural communities into industrial zones. To shift residents’ views on wind farms, they must be informed of the facts and many benefits of wind as a dominant energy source. South Africa has exceptionally promising conditions for wind power generation but has delayed wind power production,

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PES wanted to know more about how Peterson is applying a collaborative approach, together with transferring expertise and know-how to become a top player in offshore wind and renewables logistics. Sander G van Helvoort, Business Manager Wind & Renewables, Peterson was happy to help with this. The global energy industry is currently under-going a change in direction with leading innovators and companies across the globe working to speed up the transition towards clean and renewable energy sources. Access to sustainable and clean energy sources is essential to the goals set by the Agenda 2030 and the Paris Agreement on climate change. Not only does this lead the charge in sustainable energy, but renewables also contribute to a higher standard of living, as well as better health and education, and is crucial for the productive activities that can raise people out of poverty. With its origins rooted in the Netherlands, Peterson has long been inspired by the culture of its home country, and, as it moves towards renewable energy, paying particular attention to offshore wind power. The European offshore wind market is predicted to record remarkable gains over the coming six years, with the UK, Germany, Poland and the Netherlands all driven by the strict

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The battery storage market is expanding and domestic and community users are expected to install small-scale batteries. This is linked to coal phase out and cold waves, such as The Beast from the East. PES invited Keith Robertshaw, Business Development Director from N-ERGY Power Solutions to clarify the link and explain why the batteries market could face a boost very soon as a result. When the Beast from The East unwelcomingly visited the UK, residents were disturbed, and some were locked up inside unable to reach their jobs. It went beyond impacting individuals, it cost UK supermarkets £22m as shoppers made 5% fewer visit to them. The services sector was massively affected as well with Purchasing Managers’ Indices hitting a 20-month bottom low in March. Few would make the link between Beast from the East and Climate Change and some might argue that such waves have always hit the UK. But it is scientifically proven that climate change has been affecting the severity and the rapid frequency of such events. Extreme weather events cause major destructions on every scale, including causing deaths. And fighting such events and climate change is an international mission. But on an individual level, people cannot survive such events without energy. When

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With the continuous progression of the offshore wind industry we find more operators than ever searching for effective and efficient solutions to their operations. In the wind energy sector, modular units can be placed on a huge variety of vessels and barges to accommodate the manpower required during the commissioning phase of the projects. Accommodation modules are designed to interface with the control rooms, which enables great flexibility when it comes to last minute changes in projects and the varying requirements for staff. They host a range of benefits, as shown below. Fast and efficient With the palpable shift towards sustainable/renewable energy across the global industry, more organisations are opting for swift modifications on all types of fixed installations in order to keep-pace with the ongoing demand. In previous years, many of these organisations believed to have ample time to prepare for the next energy revolution, with long-term, extensive and costly new builds for their projects. However, we now find that in order to keep up, rapid conversions of existing vessel types, with the support of modular units is proving to be the way forward. As we know, a new build can be very expensive, with a long lead time to manufacture. When

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Compared to all other vessel type markets worldwide, the Crew Transport Vessel (CTV) is developing the fastest. According to MHO&Co A/S, the perfect CTV has yet to be built and as soon as the next generation is launched, there will be new requirements from a forever developing business. PES was intrigued and went to find out more from, Mik Henriksen, CEO and Dan Knudsen, COO. It is really interesting to see all the variations that are being built and the different philosophies used by various designers and builders. We have been involved in vessel design for more than 20 years, and it is fantastic to work on transfers to wind farms, where every month new turbines and concepts are being developed. There are many factors that a client needs to consider when choosing a CTV for a project: safety, operation limitations, comfort, fuel economy, cargo carrying capacity, speed and the day rate, amongst others. The CTV market has had a few hard years, following on from a some really good years, we are hopeful that the lessons learned during the hard years, will make all involved a bit more careful. MHO&Co A/S, has chosen to focus on larger CTVs, as wind farms are being

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Wind energy is proven to be a reliable way of producing clean renewable energy, and the net inflow of financial investors reflects that the industry has matured. Wind energy is clean and safe and simply constitutes a smart investment. The business will, however, see some challenges going forward. Generating new electricity has always depended on national support schemes whether it has been carbon-based or generated by renewable sources. Wind and solar will be the first renewable technologies to break this barrier in reaching the point where they can operate continuously and profitably without public subsidy. To ensure business sustainability, it will be increasingly important to continue and develop further efforts to reduce investment requirements and operating costs. Wind turbines will continue to grow in size. The components and the forces applied to the turbines will continue to grow. Which is why increasing our knowledge and understanding of how turbines operate and function is the key to reducing costs, especially as the wind business enters a critical transformative period. Integrated operations Data is increasingly driving the understanding of wind farms and their day-to-day operations. Various control and monitoring systems are available for all aspects of a wind turbine, from planned maintenance to lifecycle

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The rapid market expansion, in offshore generated wind power, requires a new approach towards offshore access for maintenance of wind generators. Two experts in access systems, Willem Prins and Marco Klitsie, developed a totally new and patented access method for which solid investors and building partners have already been found. The EAGLE-ACCESS SYSTEM will be ready for trials in early 2019 and so PES wanted to know more… Background Looking back on 15 years of experience in consultancy and the design and development of access systems for offshore platforms for several clients in the market, we conclude the present technology is far from mature. There are still more technical steps to be made, especially in the offshore wind market. A short history By the end of the 20th century the offshore oil and gas industry felt the need for cheaper access for personnel to platforms, replacing the expensive use of helicopters, which was also driven by the trend towards smaller and unmanned platforms. In 2003 the first proposals for access from PSV’s to platforms came to light and two competing access systems were introduced to the market: OAS by Offshore Solutions and Ampelmann. Both systems accommodated the access for personnel from DPII supply vessels to

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The future of solar farm security lies in communications technology. And in an optimised cooperation between security service providers and authorities. PES wanted to find out what advancements had been made at viamon since last hearing from them. Worldwide – but especially in sun-drenched regions such as the so-called Sun Belt near the equator – the number of large solar farms is growing continuously. But the environmentally friendly production of electricity and heat with solar collectors is now also booming in regions that are comparatively less sunny. In the UK, for example, more and more agricultural land is being used for the ‘cultivation’ of photovoltaic (PV) modules to harvest solar power. However, the valuable solar modules arouse desires. Protecting installed systems from specialised and often well-organised gangs of thieves is a complex challenge for security service providers. After all, the security-relevant objects are placed – visible to everyone – under the open sky. Solar farms are, of course, not placed on greenfield sites completely unprotected. But many operators of on-grid PV systems have already found out that their technological assets are not sufficiently protected by fences, surveillance cameras and alarm systems alone. A fact that also affects off-grid systems, such as water pumps

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