In its endeavour to support the country’s drive to propel the use of wind farms as sources of generating green renewable energy, temporary power and temperature-control solutions supplier Aggreko supplied nine 60 kVA generators to the precommissioning of the wind turbines at the Jeffrey’s Bay wind farm situated in the Eastern Cape.
“Jeffreys Bay is one of the nine major wind farm projects that we support in the country, says Aggreko Southern Africa GM Martin Foster.
The wind farm site spans 3 700 ha, and construction started in December 2012. The wind farm started operating in June this year and it is expected to supply 460 000 MWh/y.
Foster adds that, while Aggreko has been developing its offerings across the full spectrum of renewable-energy sources, the biggest growth has been in wind energy.
“Aggreko provides support services across the full life cycle of on- and offshore wind farms, from construction and commissioning to further operations and maintenance.”
The company has made significant investments in designing and building a specialised fleet of equipment, as well as establishing a dedicated and well-trained team of engineers and technicians to work in the wind energy sector, says Foster.
Foster says Aggreko’s services to the wind farm sector include shipping and storage, which includes the dehumidification of blades and nacelles; and the storage of nacelles, which includes powering the heating systems that keep them dry.
“We also provide temporary power to run ancillary equipment, such as safety lighting, oil heaters, turbine rotation and power supply to the internal heaters and dehumidifiers, as well as temperature-control solutions for cable installation, blade balancing and repairs.”
The company also provides temporary power and dehumidification for a substation before it is connected to the grid to ensure that electrical and electronic components are kept in optimal condition.
Larger transformers can also be provided as support, should the installed transformers fail or require maintenance, enabling continued export of power to the grid, says Foster.
Aggreko also provides ongoing maintenance services, such as comfort heating or cooling for construction personnel on the wind farm, as well as temporary power during site transformer or switchgear maintenance and shutdown periods. “This keeps all installed equipment healthy and enables a swift return to exporting power when maintenance is complete,” he notes.
Other ongoing maintenance services the company provides include fuel management services for power packages, temporary dehumidification of blades and nacelles, and climate control during blade remediation to ensure effective curing of repairs, says Foster.
“Renewables is an exciting business for us and we are seeing growth in the innovative and often challenging ways in which our equipment is being used to help bring an increasing number of renewable-energy projects on line,” he concludes.