Wind Turbine OEM Working with Analog Devices on Tower Sensors


Analog Devices Inc. (ADI), a global semiconductor company, says Envision Energy is adopting ADI’s MEMS sensor technology in the company’s new generation of smart wind turbines.

Initial goals for the collaboration include enabling new levels of wind turbine safety through enhanced real-time monitoring of vibration, tilt and other information that can be used to inform safer wind turbine operation and design. Leveraging new capabilities offered by advanced MEMS sensors adds intelligence at the edge for real-time monitoring, the company says.

With the gradual expansion of wind power scale, wind turbine components are undergoing rapid iteration. Higher tower barrels, longer blades and heavier engine rooms bring great challenges for the safe and reliable operation of wind power systems. Among the challenges, the tower barrel is one of the key components requiring monitoring to ensure the safety and reliability.

To promote safety, as well as to help prevent tower collapse and other extreme accidents, Envision Energy and ADI will introduce predictive maintenance technology into the core control of smart wind turbines. This will be accomplished by deploying ADI’s precision inertial measurement unit and low-noise, low-drift accelerometers on different positions of the tower barrel to monitor the key states of tower barrel in real time. Information gathered by monitoring tower conditions is then used to inform danger prevention measures.

“We are pleased to work with ADI to add its predictive, precision, high-reliability MEMS sensors to our wind turbines,” says Envision Energy’s Haipeng Chen. “This increases the safety of the tower barrel as well as brings the blade diameter and tower barrel height to the next level.”

“ADI has decades of experience in the field of MEMS sensors,” adds Neil Zhao, director of MEMS Technology Group Asia at ADI. “We are committed to helping customers solve challenges in different scenarios through high-performance solutions and all-around support. This collaboration with Envision Energy supports the promotion of smart distributed wind turbines.”

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