Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Optimising the control of wind generators by means of intelligent microsensors

25.04.2006


The School of Engineering at Bayonne (ESTIA) is working on a research project on control optimisation for the latest-generation wind generators using intelligent microsensors.



The latest-generation wind generators work at variable speed and with pitch regulation based on the pitch angle of the rotor blades. These degrees of freedom (the rotation speed and the pitch angle of each blade) enable an increase in energy yield, a decrease in fatigue due to mechanical loads and an enhancement in the quality of the electrical potential with respect to fixed-speed wind turbines. The rotation speed and the pitch angle of the blades are controlled continuously by control algorithms and the quality of these algorithms have a determining influence on the price of the energy produced by the wind generators. Although a large amount of research work on wind generator control has been undertaken, it still remains for more “intelligence” to be introduced into their functioning.

The reduction in the price of wind energy is made possible through:


- increasing the reliability and robustness of wind generators
- increasing the energy yield
- manufacturing lighter wind generators.

This weight reduction can be achieved only by reducing the mechanical forces on the blades, the transmission axle and the tower. Moreover, the current trend in increasing the size of wind generators means having mechanically more flexible machines. The control has to take into account this flexibility, especially avoiding the resonance frequencies of the various mechanical elements.

Thus, the classical criteria linked to the optimisation of control algorithms for variable-speed and pitch-regulated wind generators are:

- the quality of the electrical potential produced
- the reduction in the dynamic loads to which the wind generator structure is subjected
- the energy yield
- the robustness of the control algorithms developed.

Within the framework of this question, the ESTIA School of Engineering is particularly focusing on criteria dealing with the reduction of the mechanical stresses arising from fatigue in the elements of a wind generator (tower, blades, transmission axle/gearbox).

Fatigue in a wind generator’s elements is mainly linked with the external dynamic forces that these parts undergo and with the fluctuations in their resonance frequencies. Control of the wind generator should enable an overall reduction in these stresses in order to increase reliability and, thereby, the usefulness of wind generators, and enable a reduction in the overall weight of their components. The main loads are those withstood by the blades, the tower and the transmission axle/gearbox. The design of the control algorithms has to take into account this reduction in the mechanical stresses in these components. Several degrees of freedom exist in order to achieve this target: the two of the electric motor, the pitch angle for each blade (three for the classical wind generator) and the orientation (the “yaw”) of the whole turbine with respect to the tower axis. This last parameter is not within the remit of this current research project.

The design of this control should take into account not just one of the four criteria previously mentioned. Although the main objective here is the reduction of dynamic stresses experienced by the wind generator, the other criteria are not forgotten.

Intelligent microsensors (acceleration sensors with wireless communication) located at the blade tips, above the surface of the wind generator axis and in the tower will be used to optimise the control.

Thanks to these acceleration sensors, the control system will have supplementary information in real time, thus enabling reduction in fatigue stresses using multivariable optimisation algorithms.

Commercial wind generators are fitted with a number of sensors (voltage, current, rotation velocity, etc.). Nevertheless, they are currently not fitted with acceleration or with stress sensors.

Irati Kortabitarte | alfa
Further information:
http://www.basqueresearch.com/berria_irakurri.asp?Gelaxka=1_1&hizk=I&Berri_Kod=951

More articles from Power and Electrical Engineering:

nachricht Silicon solar cell of ISFH yields 25% efficiency with passivating POLO contacts
08.12.2016 | Institut für Solarenergieforschung GmbH

nachricht Robot on demand: Mobile machining of aircraft components with high precision
06.12.2016 | Fraunhofer IFAM

All articles from Power and Electrical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Closing the carbon loop

08.12.2016 | Life Sciences

Applicability of dynamic facilitation theory to binary hard disk systems

08.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

Scientists track chemical and structural evolution of catalytic nanoparticles in 3-D

08.12.2016 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>