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Keeping new floating wind power platforms stable

Published:  16 November, 2018

PSM Instrumentation reports it has recently had an innovative project win, developing and supplying a detection and control system for monitoring and warning of water entry into the dry area compartments of floating wind turbine platforms.

The company says this new design of platform is the most advanced solution for the deployment of wind turbines; as it doesn’t require mounting to the seabed, it means the wind turbines can be sited further offshore, so there’s less visual impact and also, they provide more benefits from the higher winds and so greater power generation possibilities of wind out at sea.

Each turbine base has 16 separate compartments, all equipped with four PSM BLS9200 bilge/food detection switches, which are connected to a PSM acquisition module. This in turn is connected via a multi-drop network to a central PLC panel. If any seawater entry is detected, the PLC will ensure the appropriate valve is opened and will send a control signal to run the relevant drainage pump.

The system operates fully independently, but the status of all the switches, valves and pumps is presented to the platform’s remote SCADA system via a serial communication link. At any time the operation of the pumps and valves may be over-ridden from controls on the remote SCADA package.

Due to the specific requirements of the project and the timescales the client was working to, PSM were required to engineer and manufacture a tailored system in under 12 weeks, and the system was delivered on time, paving the way for an exciting and innovative development in wind turbine deployment. 

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