Systematic validation of system test benches based on the type testing of wind turbines

Funding: German Federal Ministry for Economics Affairs and Energy (BMWi)
Partners: RWTH Aachen, FGH Zertifizierungsgesellschaft mbH, DEWI (UL International GmbH), ENERCON GmbH
Duration: 06/2017 – 05/2020

To date, measurement data from field tests have been used to certify the electrical properties of wind turbines. In the “CertBench” project, the alliance partners aim to prove that typical network faults such as voltage dips and spikes can be reproduced just as realistically on a system test bench. In an artificial network, certain network faults can be generated as often as required “at the touch of a button”. This, in turn, means the certification requirements can be tested in a time-effective and well-planned manner.

In order to establish the prerequisites for certification of the electrical properties on the test bench, the nacelle of a 3 MW turbine from the project partner ENERCON is being subjected to realistic loads and interactions between the nacelle and rotor. These are simulated using real-time models and control algorithms on the test bench for hardware-in-the-loop (HiL) operation. The test methods can be validated by comparing the test results with the field data from the manufacturer. The aim is to demonstrate that the network-side loads can be realistically simulated by the virtual 36,000 V medium-voltage grid in the DyNaLab (Dynamic Nacelle Testing Laboratory). The project partners hope to quantify the influence of the testing facilities on the test object and the measurement parameters.

Above and beyond this, a “virtual test bench” is to be developed which enables the development of HiL test methods irrespective of the current test bench configuration. The simulation environment will be made up of several control units, which correspond to the main control of the test bench, the drive unit, and the control for emulation of the dynamics of the test bench and test object. The partners have already begun to utilize and apply the results achieved to date in the relevant standard and guideline committees.