Areva hires SgurrEnergy for key wind-tests

French turbine manufacturer Areva has brought in UK engineering consultancy SgurrEnergy to undertake a far-ranging wind measurement campaign at the Alpha Ventus offshore test field in the German North Sea.

The programme – claimed to be the “most comprehensive” ever carried out in the industry – will deploy a trio of SgurrEnergy’s G4000 Offshore Galion Lidar devices on a 5MW Areva M5000-116.

They will simultaneously gather wind data at multiple measurement points, to feed back detailed information on the resource before and after it interacts with the turbine.

From the collected data, Areva expects to form a detailed overview of the inflowing wind field conditions over the entire rotor area, along with a better understanding of wake effects downstream of the turbine.

“This data, along with that collected by the turbine itself, which Areva Wind has instrumented with high resolution sensors, will produce a comprehensive picture, previously unattainable to the wind energy industry, of inflowing wind and its influence throughout the structure of a turbine, from blades to foundations,” says SgurrEnergy project manager Gordon Mina.

The project, which is designed to hone thinking on power curve testing, wake modelling, rotor blade design, advanced condition monitoring and wind farm design,  is slated to run from three to six months.

Lidar technology uses pulses from lasers to ascertain wind speeds, similar to the speed guns police employ to catch speeding motorists.

SgurrEnergy’s Galion device can be installed on the transition piece or nacelle of a wind turbine to measure the “free stream” wind at hub height to several rotor diameters as an alternative to an offshore met mast.