Dresden Researchers to Reduce Costs by Increasing Voltage for Offshore Wind Farms

On the way from the generator to converter, a wind system generates substantial losses in the transmission of electrical energy. In order to reduce these losses, especially in offshore wind turbines, scientists at the Technical University Dresden want to increase the electricity voltage. 

If the generator voltage is doubled, losses on the way from the generator to the converter can be reduced by up to three quarters, Technical University (TU) Dresden has said in a statement. This is exactly what the researchers are now trying to achieve in cooperation with industrial partners, F&S Prozessautomation and Semikron.

In the project “Robust and energy efficient power electronics for offshore wind turbines (MLUoff)”, the partners are now working on technical requirements to increase generator voltage from the current 1,000 volts to about 6,600 volts.

In order to make the jump to more than 6,600 volts, the project partners are developing a modular inverter that converts this high voltage by means of intelligent power electronic devices before feeding the power to the grid.

This system reliability is necessary, since the systems at sea are difficult to access for repairs. System redundancy should also ensure that the function of a wind turbine and the failure of individual cells could be kept in operation until the next scheduled service and at very competitive costs.

By the end of the project duration in 2017, the project partners hope to find solutions and demonstrate the new principle at the Electrotechnical Institute of TU Dresden.

Offshore WIND Staff; Image: BARD Offshore

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