What to do when your turbine warranty expires

Looming deadlines of expiring turbine warranties have project owners taking stock of options and planning their next steps. Lender requirements, project lifespan, and maintenance concerns are just a few factors owners must consider. The good news is that there are more options available than ever before. Project owners usually consider a third-party warranty, an OEM’s

Major Transmission Project Planned for the Atlantic Coast

Google doesn’t mess around when it comes to investments. Their sponsorship in a transmission project that could cost billions of dollars stands as a major voucher for the wind industry. One of the greatest hurdles to the renewable-energy industry’s growth is the nation’s outdated transmission system. Without a beefed-up transmission backbone, offshore wind developers would

The Right Turbine and Placement Produces 10x Power Increase

The power output of a wind farm of vertical-axis designs can be increased about tenfold simply by placing the turbines so they react with each other, say researchers at the California Institute of Technology led by John Dabiri, Caltech professor of aeronautics and bioengineering. In the summer of 2010, they conducted a field study at

Bearing Manufacturer Unveils Plans for U.S. Wind Energy R&D Center

Massive, precision-engineered bearings and seals like those made by The Timken Company are central to wind power production. The largest of these rolling element bearings weighs more than five tons, with an ID of nearly 2 m. Such large bearings require sophisticated measuring and testing capabilities that replicate dynamic wind forces. For that purpose, Timken

Turbine Doctors Revive a ‘Dead’ Vestas

It took two engineers from Availon North America a matter of hours to repair and bring on-line a Vestas V27 225-kW wind turbine that belongs to the Story County Medical Center in Nevada, Iowa. The turbine was commissioned at the end of 1994 but stopped working in April 2011 when the power supply for the

New thinking in turbine design

A novel turbine design uses two rotors of equal diameter, one each at opposite ends of a nacelle, to capture wind at greater capacity factors than conventional designs can do, say developer Airgenesis LLC (airgenesiswind.com). The developer says the rotors, offset from each other by 60°, will be turning at low speeds of 2.5 to

Variable speed hard-geared transmission may improve wind power efficiency 5 to 10%

A variable-ratio transmission that uses gears and chains, but no belts, has been introduced for licensing and production by inventor Gary Lee, CTO of VMT Technologies (www.theuniversaltransmission.com). The transmission works by expanding or reducing the diameter of a “moon gear” that drives the chain, thereby changing ratios. It does not rely on friction, which means

Entrepreneur Proposes Wind-Turbine Gear Factory For Indiana

You might think the U.S. has lots of gear-making capacity, so why would a start-up envision a factory capable of more of the same? The answer lies in the size of the gears planned by Vela Gear Systems CEO Noel Davis. Gears required in the wind industry can be in excess of 6 ft in

Improving Wind Turbine Design Through Advanced Simulation Techniques

Advancements in simulation technology continue to provide benefits to engineers in the field of wind power engineering. Windpower engineers now have the ability to simulate all aspects of the wind turbine; from detailed structural models of the blades that determine stresses and strains, to highly accurate aerodynamic models of the rotor that reflect its response

Reducing Blade Repair Costs With Suspended Access Platforms

Wind turbine owners are faced with expensive choices when it comes to blade inspection and repair work. But there are alternatives. The case studies in this webinar will show how suspended platforms provide a stable, simple, modular approach to blade access. Hear our trainer and industry veteran tell how faster mobilization and smaller crew sizes