Specific energy output data collected over a span of 11 months indicated that the Vindicator® LWS consistently generated 14% increased energy output as compared to periods when the legacy wind direction inputs were utilized, with optimization experiments showing increased energy output in excess of 20%.
"We are extremely pleased by the results of our customer trial programs," said Phil Rogers, President and CEO of Catch the Wind. "The data clearly show that by better aligning turbines with the wind, the Vindicator® LWS system’s look-ahead measurement and turbine control capabilities deliver significant energy output benefits that are unmatched in the industry."
Mr. Rogers added, "Given the economics of typical North American power purchase agreements, the Vindicator will deliver payback on investment within 12 to 24 months depending on wind turbines size, and help wind farm owners and operators maximize their revenue and profit potential."
Key highlights of the summary report presented at the EWEA 2011 Annual Event:
* The Vindicator® LWS was installed on five turbines ranging in size from 1.3 MW to more than 2.0 MW.
* In one field trial, the Vindicator® LWS generated an average energy output increase of 14% on a 1.65 MW turbine over 11 months.
* Using a more optimized control algorithm, the Vindicator® LWS generated an energy output increase of greater than 20% on the same 1.65MW wind turbine.
* The Vindicator® LWS also generated an average energy output increase of 11.1% on a 1.3 MW wind turbine in a separate evaluation program.
* The increases in energy production were due to improved pointing accuracy and increased large scale wind gust detection resulting from wind direction inputs measured by the Vindicator® LWS system.
* Data measured by the Vindicator® LWS further demonstrated that turbines using traditional wind measurement systems typically experience RMS yaw errors in excess of 21 degrees.
Mr. Rogers also said, "We believe that these latest results, which are consistent across a number of variables, including time, various turbine makes and models, and multiple geographic locations, will lead to follow-on orders from customers as the data indicates that the energy improvement performance trigger points under current customer contingent purchase agreements should be met or exceeded."
Yaw control, which involves aligning a turbine’s blades perpendicular to the oncoming wind, has traditionally been a reactive process using data inputs from wind vanes or sonic anemometers that are located to sense the wind after it has passed through the rotor blades. Conversely, Catch the Wind’s Vindicator® LWS provides real-time wind speed and direction measurements at multiple, simultaneous points ahead of the turbine rotor, thus enabling a turbine to proactively orient itself into the oncoming wind for optimal energy capture and stress load reduction.
Catch the Wind Ltd. is a high-growth technology company headquartered in Manassas, Virginia. The company was founded in 2008 to develop and manufacture the Vindicator® laser wind sensor.
Catch the Wind serves the commercial market sector for laser based wind sensor systems, recognized as the "gold standard" in wind measurement. The company is focused on becoming a major contributor in making clean, renewable wind energy more affordable and profitable.