Load measurements

Load measurements

Benefit from DNV GL's expert testing procedures.

Although the size and rated power of wind turbines are increasing, slimmer designs and new components are being introduced to reduce turbine loads. These changes make calculating the actual turbine loads a more challenging task. Determining these loads accurately, however, is crucial in improving future turbine designs and in validating and refining the computer models used to calculate them.

Load measurements are not only required for certification of wind turbines but also to obtain a true picture of the actual loads on components, and thus increase confidence in the design of a turbine. Besides, additional measurements can help identify critical components and effects that are impossible to simulate, e.g. vibrations. This enables the turbine design or control system to be modified to mitigate any adverse effects. Particularly in the field of controller development, vital information can be derived from feeding back load measurements into the control algorithm.

DNV GL can point to many years of experience and benchmark-setting expertise in load measurements for wind turbines. The services offered include:

  • Load measurements: Mechanical load levels against wind and power, equivalent loads (normalised to 1 Hz), lifetime fatigue loads and natural frequencies of selected components – used for classification purposes, determining the true loads on a wind turbine and comparing them with design load cases. We have offices with experienced measurement staff in Seattle (US), Shanghai (CN), Madrid (ES) and Kaiser-Wilhelm-Koog (GER), which can be supported by staff from one of our local offices around the world.
  • Turbine behaviour and safety tests: A functional safety test and a fully operating load measurement system to test turbine behaviour – required for certification.
  • Special measurements: Aimed at addressing specific issues, typically yaw torque, pitch or high speed shafts, bending moments of rotor bolts, strain gauges on main frame or hub hotspots.
  • Component testing: Either as part of a complete system (wind turbine) or on a test bench (e.g. blade test stand).
  • Small wind turbines: Own facilities for performance, duration and structural testing of small turbines – mainly for certification purposes.

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