New cable guarantees electicity supply
Together with Skellefteå Kraft and Blade Solutions, a new method has been developed to enable the installation of new cables inside wind turbine blades, which means that after repair, wind turbines can be directly put into operation for continued electricity production.
Wind turbine blades contain cables for various purposes, for example sensors, relays and for feeding power to heating systems. If any cable is broken it must be repaired in a way that does not compromise blade strength, operational safety or the wind turbine’s electricity production.
“Our wind turbines must always be operational to produce the electricity that has been promised to Svenska Kraftnät (the state owned Swedish power grid company),” says Henrik Renberg, operating engineer at Skellefteå Kraft.
New method for replacing cables
If a blade cannot be repaired, it needs to be replaced, implying high costs and long downtimes.
Under the framework of a project within SWPTC (Swedish Wind Power Technology Centre), a method has been developed to enable new cables to be fitted inside wind turbines. The blades are often over 40 feet long, narrow and not accessible to the personnel to crawl in.
Fast repairs at the site
In close collaboration with Skellefteå Kraft and the repair company Blade Solutions, Swerea has developed a method where cables are replaced at site without jeopardising the blade’s function.
“Now we have a method to use for this kind of complicated repair work, something that was not possible in the past,” says Greger Nilsson at Blade Solutions.
SWPTC is a wind power centre which is funded by the Swedish Energy Agency and participating organisations. The centre is coordinated by Chalmers University of Technology.