O&M push wind power and competitiveness

In Oklahoma, where Enel Green Power North America has 534MW of wind power online and 350MW under construction, component replacement times have been greatly reduced thanks to the efficiency of on-site Operations & Maintenance teams and the Conditioning Monitoring System that checks the functioning of all working wind turbines.


Enel Green Power’s wind power in the United States continues to grow, and besides the installed capacity exceeding 1,562MW that is already online, additional capacity is under construction. Like the 350MW that are going to be installed in Oklahoma, where recently yet another worksite has opened for the construction of the Little Elk, park, and where EGP’s ability to develop increasingly competitive technologies and plants, goes beyond the mere construction stage and applies to the whole range of wind farms and to individual turbine operations.

For EGP, Oklahoma is a land of wind power and of records, not only due to “its stellar production levels” – as defined by the ReCharge magazine – achieved by the Rocky Ridge and Chisholm View wind farms which, to present a telling fact, at the beginning of 2014 were operating with a capacity factor of 60 to 65%, absorbing high-intensity winds and achieving a daily generation exceeding 5GWh. In the State that is part of the Bible Belt and was traditionally well-known for gas and oil production, but is currently leading the US green revolution, EGP’s wind power is a best practice also thanks to efficient plant management.

The expertise of Operations & Maintenance activities performed by Enel Green Power North America’s teams can be measured by the speed of the tasks that are carried out, the avoided generation losses and the operational results achieved thanks to predictive maintenance solutions. The various examples that show to what extent O&M is a jewel in the crown of EGP’s operations in Oklahoma, in particular thanks to the Conditioning Monitoring System(CMS),includetwo records achieved in2014: Enel Green Power’s teams in the USA have reduced to such extent the time needed to perform necessary tasks that it only takes them 28 hours and 37 minutes to relocate a turbine gearbox – essential to convert wind into energy – thus halving the previous record of 41.5 hours and avoiding a generation loss of around 400MWh. Also by using the CMS, EGP North America’s O&M teams have been able to plan the stoppage of a wind blade in order to replace a damaged gearbox, limiting the downtime to only two days instead of the average 30 days that are normally required, thanks to wind intensity forecasts allowing to identify the most suitable time in which to perform this task.