ABB is supplying a range of medium-voltage frequency converters that are specifically designed for use in wind turbines. The medium-voltage converters with a power rating of more than 5 megawatts (MW) are made from modules that use integrated gate-commutated thyristor (IGCT) technology. These modules make it possible to build compact converters that fit on a single deck inside the tower of a wind turbine.
“Offshore wind energy is quickly becoming an important source of renewable energy that helps to reduce the impact of electric generation on the environment,” said Ulrich Spiesshofer, head of ABB’s Discrete Automation and Motion division. “ABB has the technology to efficiently generate reliable energy from wind power.” .
There is an optimum rotor speed for every grade of wind velocity. As a result the frequency of the generated current varies with the grade of the wind speed. The frequency converter adjusts the current to a fixed frequency so that it can be fed into the grid.
ABB’s offering for the wind industry consists of two broad ranges of products. The first includes products needed to make a wind turbine operate, such as generators, converters, transformers, switchgear and low-voltage products. ABB has already delivered more than 50 medium-voltage converters to AREVA Wind in Germany, and all wind turbines of the type AREVA M5000 installed in the first German offshore wind park alpha ventus are equipped with ABB converters. These converters have now been operating successfully for two years. .
The second range consists of products required to connect wind parks to the public grid. An important technology is high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission, which reduces energy losses. ABB has developed HVDC Light, which enables the transmission of electricity up to 1,200 MW through underwater and underground cables. .
Anil Srivastava, CEO of AREVA Renewables, said: “The AREVA M5000 turbine is a well-established and proven technology for offshore wind parks, and ABB is an experienced and reliable partner when it comes to efficient power generation from these turbines.” .
ABB provides a wide range of products, systems and services that enable the efficient generation and integration of renewable wind energy into the grid and its reliable transmission and distribution.