Wind, solar and diesel power package for offshore wind measurement

UK small wind turbine manufacturer Ampair has designed a wind, solar photovoltaic (PV) and diesel powered range, the containerPod™, for providing platform power for the offshore wind measurement sector.

By Kari Williamson

Jeremy Davies Ampair’s Sales and Marketing Manager, says: “Onshore heated met-masts and LIDAR installations use between 50 and 200 W of power and to date we have been able to power these with our existing solutions. However in any offshore installation, the loads are typically 400 W at a minimum, reaching up to well over 1 kW for periods. The main reason for these higher loads is the requirement for essential navigation lighting and communications equipment to be powered coupled with the simultaneous use of traditional met-mast and LIDAR measurement systems on the same platform.”

Ampair’s OF4000 ‘containerPod™’ unit is a turn-key packaged power solution that includes wind generators, solar PV arrays and an integrated back-up diesel generator .

The system is designed to power continuous loads of up to 850 W for 12 months without the need for a support vessel needing to be chartered to refuel the unit.

Diesel 'required'

“After extensive modelling with our in-house stochastic modelling software proAmpair™ we could see that that using a purely renewable solution just didn’t add up as they required much larger battery banks, larger wind turbine arrays and larger solar arrays. These carried a price, weight and deck space premium that was not attractive.

“From the model, we could see that the best efficiency was obtained by using a small DC diesel generator that should only need to be run for 50-100 hours a year. By keeping the generator run time so low, we still deliver the low/no maintenance benefit of a purely renewables-based system, but we can supply power year round in a much more cost and size effective package,” he adds.

Ampair’s containerPod solution includes a ‘through-deck’ turbine pole which allows the Ampair 600 wind turbine to be lowered vertically to chest height, and also an integrated generator and fuel tank compartment which share a common bund.

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Energy infrastructure  •  Photovoltaics (PV)  •  Wind power