Reliable Fault notification systems at Wind Farms require Industrial Grade tested and certified product
The technology within a modern wind turbine is a far cry from the humble Windmill of yesteryear. Encompassing accelerometers, humidity and airflow sensors, rotary encoders and signal processors, to name a few, the technology is complex and constantly evolving. Wind turbines and wind parks are generally located in remote places, where the wind power can be harvested without physical interruptions such as buildings. This poses challenges for technicians who need to monitor the functionality of the turbines and be notified when faults occur.
A windfarm near Bremen in Germany, consisting of 7 wind turbines was experiencing problems with their existing fault notification system. The turbines are in a closed TAN (Turbine Area Network), connected to one another over multimode fiber and feed their status notifications to a master turbine. Each Wind turbine contains a controller unit for monitoring purposes which sends out fault notifications should the turbine be compromised. The turbine controller’s serial interface connects to Ethernet via a Serial Device Server and integrates into the multimode fiber network using Ethernet Switches. The fault notification system proved to be unreliable, and the Windfarm owners turned to Deutsche Windtechnik (DWT) for advice. Andreas Körner, SCADA-Administrator at DWT, identified that the temperature fluctuations within the wind turbine was the likely reason for the malfunction.
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