The prototype of the new W2E wind turbine has been supplying electricity to the Ukrainian grid for two weeks now. With 151m rotor diameter and 4.5MW, the W2E-151/4.5 is one of the largest onshore turbines in the world. The very short development time of the W2E engineers is astonishing. In less than 1.5 years, the design including assembly, erection and commissioning was completed. In the meantime, five turbines have been completely erected.
The short turnaround time was achieved through intensive, cooperative cooperation with system suppliers and close cooperation with the Ukrainian customer FWT Ukraine. In the meantime, the technology has also been sold to a major Chinese customer. The W2E engineers are already planning a significant increase in rated power.
On January 1, 2019, the new research project DynAWind² between the University of Rostock and W2E Wind to Energy started for a more accurate life cycle prediction of wind turbines. The project is funded by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy with almost 1.9 million Euros until the end of 2021. The University of Rostock will receive the largest share of this with more than one million euros.
Wind turbines are currently being designed and approved for a certain life cycle. Many turbines are dismantled at the end of their approved operating life, although they generally still have large structural reserves for safe and economical continued operation. The project aims to develop a process that will enable these structural reserves to be exploited. The University of Rostock with its chairs for Structural Mechanics and Technical Mechanics/Dynamics contributes competences in the fields of fatigue strength and dynamic analysis of large, highly loaded structures to the project. W2E contributes its extensive experience in the design of innovative wind turbines to the project and provides the prototype turbine for the planned experimental investigations. The long-term behaviour of the rotor blades made of composite materials is being investigated by the Berlin-based blade developer WINDnovation. “For us as blade developers, the knowledge of the actually occurring stresses on the rotor blades is of great benefit for the improvement of our design methods”, says Dr. Roland Stoer, CEO of WINDnovation, “therefore we were immediately hooked on this project”. Dr. Torsten Schütt, CEO of W2E, agrees: “The continuous cooperation with the University of Rostock is a great benefit for the development of state-of-the-art technologies, but also for our company as a whole. In the past two years, we were the first wind turbine developer to use inertial measurement technology on its turbines”. With this measurement technology it is possible to detect translational and rotational vibrations of the wind turbine around all three spatial axes with only one sensor.
Professor Christoph Woernle from the Chair of Technical Mechanics/Dynamics at the University of Rostock also emphasizes the advantages of the cooperation: “The long-standing successful cooperation between W2E and the Faculty of Mechanical and Marine Engineering is a cornerstone of wind energy research at the University of Rostock with decisive impulses for the further scientific qualification of our PhD students and the practice-oriented education of our students in the engineering sciences”.
Since 2011, the University of Rostock has been cooperating with the Rostock-based wind turbine developer W2E in the field of dynamic analysis of wind turbines and in the development of novel concepts for electrical converters. The very successful cooperation, not only in research but also in teaching, was consolidated in 2016 by a cooperation agreement in the presence of the then Minister of Education Mathias Brodkorb and the Minister of Energy Christian Pegel of the State of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. In the course of the cooperation to date, more than 3.7 million euros of third-party funding has been acquired within the framework of the federal government’s energy research program, of which the University of Rostock received more than 1.1 million euros.
Press release University of Rostock (DE)
Report “Norddeutscher Rundfunk” NDR (DE)
Report “Erneuerbare Energien” (DE)
Report “Süddeutsche Zeitung” SZ (DE)