Ingeteam wins Mexico windfarm control centre deal

Ingeteam, an independent global supplier of electrical conversion and turbine control equipment, has been awarded a substantial contract by leading Mexican renewable energy developer Zuma Energía to provide a state-of-the-art control center for its operational windfarm in Oaxaca, PE Ingenio.

The platform will collect all the relevant information on the infrastructure of the windfarms in real time, enabling the operator to effectively manage and optimize the operation and maintenance of its wind turbines.

The control centre will be the cornerstone of Zuma’s asset performance management. It will allow the company to gather and analyze a vast array of essential operating data, not only on the wind turbines and substations, but also on the electricity market and the variations of meteorological conditions.

The control systems collect the continuous stream of information that each wind turbine generates every second. All key condition parameters, such as temperatures, vibrations, operating conditions and alarms are monitored and stored in big data databases optimized to work with large volumes of data in real time in a scalable way. The control centre will be located in the offices of Zuma Energía in Mexico City.

Zuma Energía’s chief executive Adrian Katzew said: “Currently, Zuma Energía has 725 MW in its portfolio, which were awarded to the company In Mexico’s second clean-energy tender held in September 2016. This accounts for a quarter of the tender’s total, and is a major achievement for our company. It is a privilege to contribute to the sustainable transformation of Mexico’s electricity system, benefiting the generations to come.”

First grid-connected utility-scale solar and storage project for Australia

The 13 MW Lakeland Solar and Storage Project in Queensland has started feeding electricity into the grid, becoming Australia’s first grid-connected, utility-scale solar and battery energy storage facility.

And while ‘flicking the switch’ to connect Lakeland I to the grid, project developer and owner Conergy announced Lakeland Stage II.

When completed, Lakeland I and II, will deliver solar electricity to the grid and provide local power storage to homes and businesses.

Lakeland Solar & Storage Project was made possible through $17.4m in funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency. It is located in Cook Shire, which is more than 240km north west of Cairns.

Conergy managing director Christopher West said “it’s a milestone for Conergy – the first solar and storage project of its scale connected to the grid in Australia”.

“The region is abundant in solar resource, so it’s an ideal place to deliver solar projects like Lakeland and now Lakeland II. Once completed, Lakeland and Lakeland II will provide 30 MW of local solar generation, with storage. Imagine powering up approximately 4015 average home air-conditioning units and running them all at the same time for eight hours through the heat of the day – that’s the combined production output capacity of Lakeland I and II.”

West added that Conergy that “having locally-based energy generation in these more remote areas reduces power losses caused by lengthy transmission distances from power stations outside the region”.

Indonesia examines viability of electric vehicles

The government of Indonesia and Mitsubishi Motors are partnering in a new electric vehicle programme, aimed at helping the country to reduce exhaust emissions.

The partnership is producing joint studies and have commenced the process by donating 10 electric vehicles.

Mitsubishi Motors chief executive Osamu Masuko said the vehicles will contribute to a series of studies on transport infrastructure that can accommodate electric vehicles. Green cars have yet to attract much attention among the Indonesian public. “This is an important moment for Mitsubishi Motors, the Indonesian government and the Indonesian people — who stand to benefit from increasing car ownership, a more connected community and a safer, greener environment,” Masuko said. “Mitsubishi Motors wants to contribute directly to Indonesia’s transition to a low-carbon economy era.”

The donated vehicles consist of eight units of the Mitsubishi Outlander plug-in hybrid SUV model and two i-MiEVs, with four battery chargers included.

“The studies will assess the use of electric vehicles in various locations in Indonesia. Meanwhile, we will track the energy management potential of electric vehicles, examining the use of the Outlander PHEV and i-MiEV as a storage resource,” Masuko said.

Indonesian industry minister Airlangga Hartarto said the joint study agreement with is one of a number of government programs intended to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from motor vehicles that consume fossil fuel, and thus fight global warming.

Drone to provide new details of
Fukushima radiation

A drone carrying radiation-mapping technology is to provide new details of the contamination inside the reactor building at Japan’s damaged Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear power plant.

The drone, dubbed RISER (Remote Intelligence Survey Equipment for Radiation), will be able to perform autonomous flights into areas beyond the reach of GPS signals, allowing for mapping of parts of the structure that have thus far been unreachable. It will then send back a high-definition 3D map of the contamination.

Measuring less than one metre in diameter, the drone uses laser positioning to navigate complex environments and avoid obstacles.

Developed in the UK by UAV specialist firm Blue Bear (responsible for the drone technology) and electronics engineering outfit Createc (responsible for the radiation-mapping software, called N-Visage), the RISER drone project has received R&D funding from the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) and innovation agency Innovate UK.

The combination of drone and software has been trialled at the UK’s Sellafield nuclear site, where the system has collected information about conditions inside a chimney that has been contaminated since a 1957 fire.

The N-Visage software, sans drone, has already been used inside one of the reactor buildings at the Fukushima plant.

NDA technology head Melanie Brownridge said the agency was “thrilled to see RISER put to work in Japan, and delighted that our early-stage support for the N-Visage system enabled Createc to develop its potential further.

“The subsequent collaboration with Blue Bear, again funded by the NDA through an initiative with Innovate UK, led to RISER. This shows the importance of funding innovative ideas through their journey from the drawing board to the market – not just for the NDA’s decommissioning mission but for the wider UK and overseas economy.”

ABB to supply fast chargers for electric buses in Norway

It will provide eight heavy vehicle chargers (HVCs) to Trøndelag County Council to power a fleet of 35 fully-electric vehicles in what is one of Europe’s largest electric bus schemes.

The project is one of the first where fully electric buses of two different bus brands will run a large scale commercial operation using the same charging infrastructure.

ABB’s HVC 450P chargers will charge 25 Volvo 7900 Electric buses and 10 Heuliez GX 437 vehicles.

The HVC 450P provides 450 kW DC output power and can recharge a battery in three to six minutes, says ABB. The chargers are compatible with OppCharge, an interoperable and open interface for DC electric bus charging that uses a pantograph mounted on the infrastructure.

The contract is for ten years and will include connected services like remote management to ensure high uptime during operation.

The chargers will be installed at the endpoints of four bus routes that are being electrified, including some more remote locations served by the Trondheim bus route.

The new fully electric buses will cover distances of between 12 and 15 km each. The HVC 450P chargers will be delivered in February 2019 with operations due to start in August.

Frank Mühlon, head of ABB’s Global Business for Electric Vehicle Charging, said: “At 35 vehicles, Trondheim will have the largest electric bus fleet in Norway and we are proud to have been chosen as a strategic partner.

“We are working hard to build a smarter and greener network and believe that EV technology is the key to driving-up efficient transport systems across Europe and beyond.”

Wood leads industry project on subsea cable stability

Scotland-headquartered engineering services company Wood has led a joint industry project to improve knowledge and understanding of how submarine cables affect the marine environment.

The study gathered key industry players including EDF Energies Nouvelles, RTE, Bardot Group and DNV GL and it has spent the last year developing a new set of industry guidelines.

Submarine cables connect renewable energy sources such as offshore wind and wave and tidal power projects with the grid.

However, it is acknowledged that existing guidelines were originally derived from the oil & gas industry and are more suited towards assessing the stability of pipelines.

Wood said this anomaly “can result in overly conservative designs with onerous recommendations and the need for expensive stabilisation systems which could, in turn, jeopardise the financial viability of new projects”, so the project has developed a new set of industry guidelines.

This new methodology, which is based on numerical models calibrated with laboratory tests performed in the wave and current basin of the Oceanide test facility in the south of France, provides advice on assessing subsea cables on-bottom stability on rocky and non-smooth seabed.

This comprehensive parametric description of the physical mechanisms driving cables stability resulted in the implementation of an advanced methodology for on-bottom stability analysis with a significant gain in conservatism compared with previous standards.

Bob MacDonald, chief executive of Wood’s Specialist Technical Solutions business, said the joint industry project “has really demonstrated the importance of industry collaboration”.

“Our findings have acknowledged that there were over-conservatism issues but by working together we have developed a new set of guidelines which will ultimately deliver
significant improvement of costs for both OPEX and CAPEX.”

Final gas engine delivered to Kiel CHP plant

The 20th and final gas engine has been delivered to what will be one of the most modern and flexible engine-based combined heat and power plants in Europe.

The K.I.E.L. coastal power plant will supply district heating in Hiel, Germany, after a coal-fired power plant in the city is decommissioned in a year’s time.

After commissioning, the new large-scale plant – running on 20 of GE’s Jenbacher J920 FleXtra gas engines – will supply over 73,000 homes and facilities in Kiel with district heating.

Additionally, the electric power generated will be fed into Kiel’s 110-kilovolt power grid, which supplies electricity both to households in the state capital and some of the surrounding municipalities. Excess energy will be passed on to the upstream power grid.

“Our K.I.E.L. coastal power plant is unique in Europe,” explains Frank Meier, managing director of Stadtwerke Kiel. “Installing the 20 Jenbacher FleXtra gas engines in the engine cells is another milestone for Kiel’s reliable, sustainable and efficient heating supply.”

Dr Jörg Teupen, director of technology and human resources, adds: “The modular generation concept allows the coastal power plant to react to all requirements of the energy market with great flexibility. Every one of the 20 gas engines ramps up to full load in less than five minutes. That allows us to react to changing grid situations at any time.”

The new gas-fired cogeneration facility replaces the electricity and heat previously generated by the coal-fired plant on the Kieler Förde, which has been in operation since 1970.

With an overall efficiency of about 91 per cent and by using natural gas, the new CHP facility will emit over 70 per cent less carbon dioxide than the coal plant.

“In the coastal city of Kiel, fluctuations in renewable energy production range from storm to calm,” explains Carlos Lange, president of GE’s Distributed Power. “These fluctuations require supplementary energy solutions that can start quickly and reliably when required—such as the new K.I.E.L. coastal power plant.”

A 60-metre high heat storage unit with a 30,000 m3 volume and a 35 MW electrode boiler further boost the flexibility of the plant.

The plant is being engineered and implemented by KAM and GE. KAM is the general contractor responsible for engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning the turnkey power plant, including the auxiliary buildings and integrating the heat storage and electrode boiler.

Arkona transformer station sails from France

STX France shipyard has completed the transformer station for the offshore windfarm Arkona.

Weighing more than 5000 tonnes and more than 100 metres high, the transformer station will form the heart of the Arkona offshore windfarm, which Germany’s E.ON and Norway’s Statoil are building off the coast of Rügen in Germany.

Construction of the substation took 500,000 working hours and now two high-sea tugs
will transport the foundation and platform to the German Baltic Sea, a journey that, depending on weather conditions, should take two weeks.

Holger Matthiesen, director of the Arkona Project, said: “With completing the topside within time and budget we reached an important milestone for the entire project. The cooperation of several European companies can be seen as a symbol of how the development of renewable energy can be achieved with combined forces.”

The Arkona project will have a capacity of 385 MW and is expected to supply around 400,000 households with electricity by 2019. It will feature 60 of Siemens’ 6 MW turbines.

Cummins unveils new genset model

Cummins has launched a C450 D5 genset model, as part of its new QSG12 diesel engine series.

With an improved design and an advanced combustion system, Cummins says the new model offers “more power for less space, by delivering a much higher power density and a more reliable power solution”.

The series is available from 400-450kVA at 50Hz and from 350-400kW at 60Hz. The C450 D5 model is powered by a Cummins four-cycle, inline, six-cylinder dual speed diesel engine.

The new product series is designed for a wide variety of applications to meet diverse customer needs in different markets such as hospitals, manufacturing, commercial and industrial facilities.

The newest C450 D5 model can run parallel with both other gensets and grids to fit diverse project site requirements. Additional features offered within this new product offering include extended service intervals of 500hrs and unaided cold start capability at 12°C.

Alok Joshi, Cummins’ director of Power Generation Business in Africa and the Middle East, said: “Our new product model is based on the QSG12 engine series, offering a much higher power density. This means that we now have a true prime-power capability to offer our customers, based on a fuel-optimised variant. The new product model includes many design and performance improvements and it is a definitive step forward for us.”