Improving the performance of wind farms is an important challenge facing every electricity producer and operator. That’s why Senvion has developed a series of performance enhancing hardware and software technologies to help producers achieve even greater gains. Depending on site conditions, Senvion offers a series of innovative solutions that significantly boost the output of wind farms.
A successful experience for Boralex
Among the various solutions proposed by Senvion, ‘Turbine Control Upgrade’ optimizes the energy production of the wind turbine thanks to innovative software improvements, including the ability to optimize the turbine through self-learning algorithms. Boralex, the first independent producer of onshore wind energy in France, has chosen this solution for 71 of its wind turbines - MM82, MM92 and MM100 - across six wind farms in France.
Boralex’s experience, following the installation of the Senvion ‘Turbine Control Upgrade’ solution, is very positive. For example, for wind farms that have been in operation for between one and three years, we measured a production increase of between 0.4 and 1.0%, depending on the site, wind profile and distribution. It is clear to us this investment has been both cost effective and profitable.
Two high-performance features: angles of deviation and cut-in wind speed
‘Turbine Control Upgrade’ is based on two features called ‘Dynamic Yaw’ and ‘Smart Turbine Start’.
Ideally, the rotor of a wind turbine should point directly into the wind at all times to produce maximum output. However, this would require constant adjustment leading to increased energy consumption of the turbine, thus reducing the gain in output. All of Senvion’s turbines have predefined angles of acceptable deviation and delays before correction of alignment, calculated for a range of different turbines and reflect an average of wind conditions at various sites. However, with specific analysis, these parameters have been optimised to generate higher output. This is the basis of Senvion’s ‘Dynamic Yaw’ technology.
The second feature, ‘Smart Turbine Start’ , optimizes the standard cut-in wind speed of Senvion’s turbines to 3 or 3.5 m/s depending on the type of turbine. Senvion’s R&D engineers have improved the setting for individual sites by programming an algorithm which is fed with SCADA data and optimizes the start-up behavior to individual site conditions. This enables harvesting of wind energy at wind speeds below the standard cut-in speed and reduces idle time, both of which result in an increase of AEP.
Senvion’s Engineering team worked closely with Boralex to evaluate different solutions to improve the performance of the company’s wind farms in France. The 'Turbine Control Upgrade' was the most suitable solution for these sites. Through a process of close collaboration and AEP analysis, we came up with the best solution which convinced Boralex to take on the technology.
A new and even more efficient version
Solutions that improve wind farm performance are a strong development focus for Senvion’s R&D team and the recent launch of ‘Turbine Control Upgrade’ version 2.0 demonstrates this trend. The new version, while improving both existing features already mentioned, adds two new features, 'Soft Cut Out,' which enables a wind turbine to operate even beyond standard cut out wind speed and ‘Adaptive Speed,' which increases the rotor speed within the upper load area.