A developer of permanent magnet generators has passed a major milestone in the company’s growth following initial successful up-tower operation of its PM generators by a leading wind-turbine OEM. The milestone – the first up-tower validation of Danotek’s PM generator technology – followed extensive in-house testing at the Danotek facility and installation in a Minnesota-based multi-megawatt wind turbine.
The installation and testing of Danotek’s PM generators is being conducted in conjunction with the Eolos Wind Research Project, a wind research consortium formed by the University of Minnesota, Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, and the University of Maine, to support wind energy technology research, development, and career education focused on increasing wind turbine performance and reliability, and helping train the next generation of wind power industry engineers.
The satisfactory initial operation of the PM generator is a prelude to a comprehensive field test procedure that will continue into early 2012. Upon passing the three to four month up-tower test program, work on delivering an initial volume of PM generators is expected to commence.
“Successful facility and up-tower testing is a major achievement that validates Danotek’s approach to the design of PM generators,” says Don Naab, Danotek’s President and CEO. “It represents the culmination of two years of advanced development, design, and test work by our team of industry-leading technical specialists. We’re proud to be supporting the Eolos project and are confident our PM generators will make a major contribution to increasing both the performance and reliability of the consortium’s wind turbine generator.”
Compared with traditional generator technologies, PM generators provide higher efficiencies at part-loads, a significant advantage for wind turbines that often operate at loads below their rated output due to variable wind resources. PM generators developed by Danotek offer many additional advantages to wind turbine OEMs including higher efficiency at rated load, greater durability arising from maintaining low magnet temperatures, and extremely low cogging torque that lets a wind turbine commence operations at lower wind speeds.
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