Diagnostics of Wind Farms
Tests of Wind Turbine Vanes and Production Moulds for Wind Turbine Vanes
Diagnostics of Wind Farms
Under the energy and climate package which the European Commission imposed on EU member states, by 2020 Poland will have to produce 15% of energy out of renewable sources in the national energy balance (1/3 of which will be generated by wind farms). This means that Poland must quadruple the power installed in the wind energy.
Complex Solutions for the Maintenance of Efficiency of Wind Turbines
The continuous development, the ambition to acquire energy from renewable sources and the strategies of the European Commission which oblige EU member states to produce 15% of energy from renewable sources are all reasons why the number of wind farms continue to grow. As time goes by, their technical condition must be inspected and maintenance works are necessary to eliminate failures on an ongoing basis. Wind turbines can be damaged both as a result of dynamic events (e.g. a thunder strike) and long-lasting unfavourable environmental impact damaging the external and the internal structure of the object.
The rotor is a particularly important component of a wind turbine. Its technical condition significantly determines the efficiency of the device. The rotor is connected with vanes which are optimised during the design stage with regard to aerodynamics, materials used to build it, noise, the reflection of sun rays, the strength of materials, the use of surface and the distribution of weight. The uniform nature of weight distribution on particular vanes of the rotor has the major influence on the durability of a wind turbine. All this makes vanes some of the most expensive components of a wind power generator, next to the foundation and the drive unit. Unidentified damage to vanes translate directly into the wear of the remaining subassemblies (e.g. the transmission). Therefore, it is extremely important to have the technical condition of not only the drive unit but also the other components of wind turbines regularly diagnosed and monitored on an on-going basis. The vanes kept in good technical condition significantly reduce the risk of unpredicted standstills and, consequently, increase the efficiency of the entire turbine.
The fragile and sensitive structure of vanes often loses against nature and its unfavourable impact. Therefore, it is necessary to employ methods which allow the user to control technical conditions in a fast and efficient way and to ensure thorough repair of possible defects. That is why MONIT SHM Sp. z o.o. has started to cooperate with Gridin's Group, a Lithuanian company. Both companies have jointly developed a technology which makes it possible to carry out diagnostic works and repairs within objects of wind power generators.
The WindTherm diagnostic system is based on the active thermal imaging system with pulse excitation. The tests are performed right on the object while employing rope access. The diagnostics enables the identification of damaged areas to be repaired later, without having to disassemble the vanes. These actions contribute to the improvement of the technical condition, which increases the safety of operation and lengthens the life time of the entire turbine.
Mariusz Szwedo - President of the Management Board