The Kongsberg Group has chosen the Kongsberg Maritime facility at Lade in Trondheim, Norway as the home of its new ‘Centre for Optimum Wind Park Operation’. The new wind power division, is a joint venture between global marine technology developer Kongsberg Maritime and parent company Kongsberg Group, and has been implemented to develop solutions for wind park management and operations that will ultimately lower the cost of wind power generation.
“Kongsberg Maritime is a world leading supplier of automation equipment to ships and the offshore sector. Our experience and technology is completely transferrable to the wind power segment and we believe that we can offer a strong portfolio of solutions to support wind park operational efficiency and predictability,” comments Andreas Jagtøyen, Vice President, Merchant Marine Trondheim, Kongsberg Maritime.
The possibilities of Kongsberg Maritime’s contribution to wind power generation are already being realised through the Windsense R&D project, which is a vital element of the company’s commitment to the sector. The project is supported by the Research Council of Norway and headed by the new wind power division at Kongsberg Maritime Lade, in partnership with eight other companies and R&D institutions.
Wind park management and monitoring are the two main focuses of the new division. There is a clear case for transferring Kongsberg Maritime’s proven maritime and offshore systems to benefit the production of wind power and to meet the challenges the sector faces. Weather conditions can make wind parks inaccessible to personnel for long periods, and any stoppage results in major economic consequences, so the possibilities of advanced monitoring and automation systems are extremely attractive to operators. The wind park management focus will aim at maximum operational predictability and profitability of the wind park’s power generation.
“As more and more offshore wind parks are built, good systems for remote monitoring and diagnostics, as well as calculating remaining economic life, will be particularly important,” continues Jagtøyen. “Our focused technology development will result in sophisticated systems for monitoring and condition-based maintenance, thus reducing maintenance costs and non-scheduled downtime. Such a system has clear parallels to the solutions we develop for integrated operations in the offshore oil and gas sector.”
The wind power sector is growing fast globally and Kongsberg Group is committed to making a solid contribution to the targeted 30% reduction in cost price per kilowatt hour, which in turn will boost the competitiveness of wind power.