Tips for a Successful Wind Farm Construction Project
Wind farm construction is far more important than you might think. That’s because wind turbines transform kinetic energy from the wind into rotary mechanical energy that can be used for various purposes. This rotational energy can also be converted into electricity with the help of a generator.
With things being the way they are, having the ability to generate clean, sustainable energy is more crucial than ever.
To help you get your next build off the ground, we’ve provided some tips on how to achieve a successful wind farm construction project. But first, let’s explore what makes wind farms so important.
Today, wind is the largest renewable energy source in the U.S. Wind energy is becoming more popular due to its overall sustainability and increasingly low cost. Wind itself is a plentiful and inexhaustible resource that can provide energy without the emission of fuels that often result in air pollution.
As such, wind farm construction and wind turbine construction are imperative to lessening humanity’s reliance on fossil fuels.
- Hydraulics system
- Rotor blades
- High-speed shaft and mechanical brake
- Low-speed shaft
- Electrical generator
- Electronic controller
- Cooling unit
- Yaw mechanism
- Anemometer and wind vane
All wind farm construction projects must follow strict guidelines regarding when and where they can build. After all, the site where wind turbine construction takes place ultimately depends on the winds themselves.
Before the wind turbine construction process can begin, the manufacturer must designate an optimal location for the wind farm. This spot must have consistent winds with speeds that exceed 25 kilometers per hour.
Once the site has been selected, the roads are cut to facilitate the transportation of parts. Afterward, the site is graded and leveled, a concrete foundation is laid, and underground cables are installed. The cables connect the turbines and route them to the control center.
The control center is where the wind farm is monitored. It’s also the point where electricity is transferred to the power company.
In most wind farm construction projects, the tower is assembled on-site. All parts are bolted together while the tower lays horizontally. At the appropriate stage, a crane lifts the tower into place, and workers tighten the bolts. Following assembly, the stability of the tower undergoes rigorous testing.
The nacelle frame, which is constructed from fiberglass, is manufactured off-site. The nacelle contains the main drive shaft, gearbox, and controls for the blade pitch and yaw, which are subsequently mounted into the frame. Once on site, the nacelle is lifted by crane onto the tower and bolted down.
Three materials are used to construct rotary blades: fiberglass, aluminum, and wood.
Fiberglass is the most popular choice. It’s molded from a resin-composite mixture. Aluminum rotary blades are made by bolting aluminum sheets together, while wooden blades are carved into an aerodynamic shape.
Once the nacelle has been placed on the tower, the blades are bolted on.
The electrical communication is installed during the nacelle and blade placement. From there, cabling is installed from the nacelle to a utility box and from the utility box to the control center.
Due to its fairly recent entry into the market, wind farm construction is still something of a wild frontier. As such, it’s an area of industry that requires stringent regulation. Most companies schedule inspections every three months and maintenance every six.
The maintenance process typically involves lubricating the parts and checking oil levels. Additionally, the electrical systems undergo testing to ensure that there are no issues with the gearbox.
Wind farms have a bright future. This emerging form of renewable energy is still in its infancy and can only become more advanced and advantageous as time goes on. Most experts wager that wind turbine construction will increase in the coming years.
If you need assistance with a wind turbine construction project, Constructable is ready to help. Our design-build firm in Houston specializes in building renewable energy structures and would love to hear more about the specifics of your project. Contact us today at (832) 844-0500 to get started!