6 factors when buying an ice detection system

Whitepaper: Optimise your wind turbine by using ice detection

6 Faktoren beim Kauf eines Eisdetektionssystem

You are planning to buy an ice detection system and you still have not decided which system to buy or you would like to know whether you have taken into account the essential factors for the purchase. In the following article, the most important factors for the purchase of an ice detection system are shown and examined in more detail.

Regardless of whether you choose a system that measures directly on the rotor blade surface, a nacelle-based ice detection system or a rotor blade-based ice detection system that measures inside the blade, the following factors may be relevant to your purchase.

What should you consider when buying an ice detection system?

To decide on the right ice detection system, the following characteristics should be considered, among others. Depending on the requirements and the location of the wind turbine, different characteristics of the system may be less important or more important.

Factor 1 – Certificates

Is the company certified? Is the solution certified? If so, what certifications does the technical ice detection system have and what certifications does the company have?
In the field of ice detection, there is, among other things, the DNV certificate, which is an international certification. With this certification, you can be sure that the company processes comply with an international or national standard and are continuously improved. A re-certification of the company is usual every 2 years. Here you can find eologix certificates and awards.

Factor 2 – Flexibility of the solution

Is the solution flexible and adaptable to your needs? Is the solution expandable? Do you need a customised solution or is a standard product suitable?

Factor 3 – Maintenance

How often is maintenance necessary? Is the system maintenance-free? Which components have to be serviced or replaced at what intervals? Are components with typically short service lives installed? What maintenance costs must be expected?

Factor 4 – Technical solution

There are a variety of systems for detecting ice on the rotor blades or other technologies for detection of icing.
The most common are: measurement of ambient temperature, measurement of ambient temperature and humidity, anemometer comparison, nacelle-based ice detectors, camera system, ice detection by changing the power curve, ice detection by measurements directly on the rotor blades.
Due to the measurement methodology and the associated accuracy, the above mentioned procedures differ not only in the factors of the yield of the wind turbine and wear but also in the factor safety. Therefore, two technical solutions have established themselves on the market: on the one hand, nacelle-based ice detection systems and ice detection systems on rotor blades.

When selecting a technical solution, the following questions should be asked.

Is an intervention in the system necessary? What operating data does the system need? Is the solution energy self-sufficient? What happens if the system fails? How redundant is the system – is trouble-free operation ensured? Which measured variables are measured? How does the system detect the icing? How precise is the system? Does the system allow fully automatic operation in icing conditions?

Factor 5 – Calibration

Does the system even need to be calibrated? At what interval is calibration necessary? How quickly can the system be calibrated to achieve the specified precision? What data are required for this by the plant operator, the manufacturer and the plant itself? How often is calibration necessary or does the system has to be recalibrated? Is the calibration performed manually or automatically? If a pitch strategy is changed, is it necessary to recalibrate the system?

Factor 6 – Installation and Commissioning

Can the system be mounted on an existing installation? With what effort? Is cabling necessary? Does this influence anything else? Which interfaces must be provided?

Which technical possibilities there are for ice detection and which are currently available on the market and how they differ can be found in our free 21-page whitepaper Ice Detection for the optimisation of your wind turbine

Whitepaper - Ice Detection to optimise your wind turbine

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