Kongsberg/Ricardo in Wind Farm Bearing Collaboration
Ricardo and KONGSBERG say that they have signed a framework agreement that will see Ricardo support the development of the Kongsberg Wind Farm Management System (WFMS) as well as related condition monitoring systems for a range of other industrial sectors.
The Kongsberg WFMS is a turbine independent decision support system. It surpasses the functionality found in wind farm supervisory control and data acquisition systems, and offers a modern and intuitive user interface based on KONGSBERG's wide ranging experience in automation and decision support systems for the defence, maritime and offshore oil & gas sectors.
KONGSBERG selected Ricardo to support the development of the WFMS not least due to the company's expertise in wind turbine drivetrains. Crucially, this includes a deep understanding of the physical mechanisms of failure of drivetrain bearings, and Ricardo's extensive research into advanced sensor techniques.
A significant aspect of the collaboration between KONGSBERG and Ricardo will be investigating the potential integration of the new Ricardo SensorLife technology – to be launched formally later this month at WindEnergy Hamburg – into KONGSBERG's WFMS. Ricardo believes that SensorLife could result in significant reductions in the cost of energy of wind farms. These savings would be realised through the more accurate prediction of the remaining useful life of key components and the consequential ability to reduce cost through proactive maintenance.
In addition to the framework agreement, KONGSBERG has contracted Ricardo to further prove the SensorLife technology, including sensor testing and development of feature extraction techniques.
"Ricardo's experience in drivetrains and KONGSBERG's experience in system development, sensors and automation systems are an excellent basis for this new cooperation. Ricardo provides an innovative approach to some of the key challenges in condition monitoring combined with extensive experience ranging back almost 100 years," comments Kristian Holm (General Manager Wind).