All articles by ky nikitha

ky nikitha

The oncoming storm

As chief technology officer at Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, Antonio de la Torre is leading the company’s digital transformation, and research and development strategy. He talks to Tim Gunn about the advances changing the face of the wind industry, the digital innovation under way at Siemens Gamesa and the challenges of staying cutting edge.

Out of the blue

A recent report has demonstrated that $8.5 billion is spent annually on unplanned repairs to onshore components. Laura Gray explores the factors that can lead to unexpected failures in both the onshore and offshore sectors, and the methods, such as the use of digital technologies, which can be employed to mitigate these occurrences.

The trouble with transport

The logistical effort involved in transporting items with the size and complexity of wind turbines is vast, involving specialised vehicles, equipment and technicians. This is compounded in a country as big as the US, where onshore turbines have to travel significant distances through varied and challenging terrain, and across state lines. Grace Allen hears about these challenges from Michele Mihelic, senior director of asset management and standards development at the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA).

Not in my backyard

Wind farms are lauded by environmentalists as clean, reliable sources of electricity. Many local communities, however, would rather the turbines be sited as far away from their homes as possible. Michael Shaw talks to Dr Jacob Ladenburg, a senior researcher at the Rockwool Foundation, and Dr Sandra Sulsky, a consultant epidemiologist with the Ramboll Group, about the fractious relationship that can develop between those who install wind turbines and the people who live nearby.

Floating in the wind

Floating wind projects are under development around the world, opening up opportunities for wind power in areas of deep water. Will Moffitt talks to Stephen Bull, Equinor’s senior vice-president for wind and low-carbon development, and Marc Costa, director of the Renewables Consulting Group, about the potential it offers in the global shift to renewable energy.

Death from above

The coming onslaught of higher temperatures and extreme weather promised by climate change necessitates our increasing reliance on wind power and other forms of renewable energy. Nevertheless, the turbines sprouting on our hills and valleys can have their own catastrophic effects on local bird and bat populations. Greg Noone talks to Dr Taber Allison, director of research and evaluation at the American Wind Wildlife Institute, about the scale of the problem and what measures are being taken for its mitigation.

Strike back

Lightning strikes can cause huge damage to offshore turbines, particularly to blades, and are also a key safety concern for crews. Abi Millar discusses the dangers turbines face from lightning, and considers the key methods and technologies used to predict and monitor this threat with Dr Vidyadhar Peesapati of the University of Manchester.

Take the lead

The recently completed Lake Turkana project has transformed the profile of wind power in Kenya. Rizwan Fazal, director of Lake Turkana Wind Power, and Karin Ohlenforst, director of market intelligence at GWEC, talk to Grace Allen about the factors enabling the development of wind power in the region, the challenges and benefits inherent in projects of this type, and how Kenya can continue to progress in this area and offer an example for Africa more widely.

Make your mark

A memorandum of understanding signed by the Danish Government and leading figures from industry has reaffirmed the country’s commitment to wind energy. Jan Hylleberg, CEO of newly created industry organisation Wind Denmark, speaks to Grace Allen about the state of play and the developments he foresees in facilitating the green transition.

Challenges to opportunities

HUSUM Wind 2019, Germany’s leading national wind trade fair, will be held on 10–13 September 2019, expecting exhibitors and visitors from DACH and further European key markets. OEMs, developers, trading and finance companies, service providers and start-ups will meet in Schleswig-Holstein, the country’s model region for renewable energy.