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SECTION SPONSOR OPERATIONS & MAINTENANCE


Romax’ extensive experience in wind turbine gearbox design and testing has helped wind farm owners and operators to coordinate predictive maintenance strategies to reduce the cost of O&M and improve the yield from their wind farms. “We are very proud of the fact that we currently monitor over 2GW of wind turbines globally, including over 40 per cent of the world’s offshore fleet,” says Alex Pucacco, Sales Operations Engineer at Romax Technology.


“However, being the largest offshore wind farm to come out of warranty, Sheringham Shoal was a big challenge for us; we got off to a slow start as we worked out some of the operational issues such as implementing communication channels with technicians that were putting in 13 hour days with constantly changing sailing times varying between a 5am sail and 3am return to shore over a 14 day cycle.”


Halsey reiterates: “If we had our time again we would have started earlier. Romax delivered a year’s worth of inspections in three months despite the challenging weather conditions.” The full EoW inspections provided included: gearbox and main bearing endoscope inspections; visual inspection of nacelle, HV area and tower; visual inspection of pitch, yaw and braking systems; visual inspection of electrical systems; blade and lightning protection inspections, and; qualitative and quantitative reporting tailored to the customer’s specifications.


In all, during its project work for Statkraft, Romax completed inspections for all 88 turbines, providing over 600 reports and around 500GBs of inspection photos within 3 months, at a site where tidal conditions, limited authorised technician availability and stormy northerly winds offered only 60% access.


THE RESULTS


Appreciation of the health of the turbines has saved Statkraft costs in maintenance activities, as repairs are targeted rather than arbitrary and has allowed warranty claims to be underpinned by extensive monitoring data provided by an independent, objective and trusted partner.


As well as this extensive list of results, Romax provided technical knowledge transfer training so that Statkraft could interpret their own endoscope images in the future.


FAULT DETECTION ASSESSMENT


Romax also delivered a fault detection assessment, which assesses the turbine specific drivetrain failure modes, the risk of each fault and the capability of detecting that fault; this has helped Statkraft in their budgeting process for future O&M costs.


Romax continue to deliver an annual vibration condition monitoring service to monitor, analyse and report monthly on the on-going status of each turbine with a monthly summary of wind farm alarm status and any observed progression in drivetrain vibration.


ROMAX INSIGHT


Romax InSight provided a vast array of reports and results to equip Statkraft with a full understanding of their wind farm health, enabling continuous monitoring and subsequent confidence in bringing the wind farm successfully out of warranty.


The comprehensive set of reports have allowed Statkraft to benchmark their asset to track the progress and development of damages and has also served as knowledge transfer to enable monitoring and endoscope inspection practices to be brought in- house. Together with process improvement and confidence going forward, achieved through expert independent assistance and advice in the claims process, Statkraft have been provided with a complete solution for their end of warranty.


“Our end of warranty campaign has been hugely successful, presenting an opportunity for us to gain a greater understanding of our wind turbines. The inspection report findings arising from this project will help us to make significant savings and benchmark the health of our turbines for future use,” Halsey concludes, “We would definitely use Romax’ services for similar projects in the future.”


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ED'S NOTE


This is an abridged version – we recommend you read the full article online through the QR Code/link


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EAST OF ENGLAND SPOTLIGHT ON


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