Canada - Hélimax develops expertise in wind turbine icing

Installation of a test bench for the observation and measurement of icing and freezing rain phenomena completed

Hélimax has recently successfully completed the installation of a test bench for the observation and measurement of icing and freezing rain phenomena at the 110-MW Baie-des-Sables wind farm in Quebec’s Gaspé Peninsula. The project – implemented in partnership with Cartier Énergie Éolienne and the École de Technologie Supérieure – represents a unique experimental undertaking. The complementary character of the competencies of the respective partners will translate into an invaluable contribution to the scientific and technological knowledge of wind power in Nordic environments. Moreover, the study demonstrates an ideal collaboration between the industrial consulting and wind farm operation sectors and the academic research milieu.

Installed on a meteorological tower in proximity to one of Baie-des-Sables’s 73 GE 1.5sle turbines, the test bench is part of the follow-up and optimization program for the said wind farm’s performance. Commissioned on 21 November 2006, the wind farm’s output is continuously monitored using a numeric model developed by Hélimax’s meteorologists and engineers. The data collected by this new installation will be entered into this model in order to better model wind farm operational conditions.

Based on a detailed study conducted by the three project partners, the test bench consists of several classic and heated anemometers and wind vanes as well as temperature, pressure and relative humidity sensors. It also includes more specialized sensors to detect and measure ice accumulation, precipitation and solar radiation, as well as an ultra-sonic 2D anemometer. Lastly, the test bench includes a video camera allowing any ice formation on the equipment to be monitored.

The test bench – designed to collect data over 2 complete winters – will provide an invaluable database to help refine methodologies for detecting icing phenomena and to quantify the impact of such occurrences on wind turbine energy performance.

Edited by Trevor Sievert, Online Editorial Journalist / Author: Hélimax Staff
Hélimax, wind energy, renewable energy, jobs, wind turbine, wind power, wind farm, rotorblade, onshore, offshore

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