FrigørFastgørLuk

Benefit from Beckhoff know-how from over 75,000 wind turbines

On the basis of the PC-based control and EtherCAT technology, Beckhoff makes system solutions available for wind turbines that have been tried and tested worldwide: more than 75,000 wind turbines all over the world up to a size of 13 MW have been automated using Beckhoff technology. In this respect, our control architecture is perfectly suited to the requirement profile of the industry: openness and scalability, flexibility in the design of the controller and a high degree of integration. All processes, from the operational management and control of pitch, converter, gearbox and brakes through to wind farm networking, are executed in software on an Industrial PC. Safety technology and condition monitoring are integrated seamlessly into the terminal segment via corresponding I/O modules. A separate CPU can thus be dispensed with. The real-time Ethernet system EtherCAT offers full Ethernet compatibility and outstanding real-time characteristics. Beyond that, it is characterized by flexible topology and simple handling. In the new TwinCAT 3 Wind Framework, the turbine manufacturer has a software tool at its disposal that gives it optimum assistance in the programming of its facilities and ports the Industrie 4.0 approach to wind energy. Another advantage: Lower-level fieldbuses such as CANopen, PROFIBUS and Ethernet TCP/IP can be relocated to the field via fieldbus master or slave terminals for the control of subsystems. Software libraries and hardware components specially developed for the wind power industry round out Beckhoff’s wide range of solutions.

The expertise acquired over more than 20 years of collaboration with turbine manufacturers in the wind energy industry makes Beckhoff a reliable partner with high solution competence. Together with the international Beckhoff subsidiaries, our expertise team in Lübeck offers worldwide support for all areas of wind turbine control: The services offered range from developing application-specific software libraries to support during the commissioning phase and control cabinet construction. According to the customer’s specifications, the Beckhoff engineering department takes on the complete control cabinet construction, starting with wiring diagram design through to prototype or serial production.

PC-based control is a universal control solution for the operational management of wind turbines.

Operational management and pitch control

PC-based control is a universal control solution for the operational management and pitch control of wind turbines.

Wind farm networking

EtherCAT allows ultra-fast wind farm networking.

High-end measuring technology ensures transparency in wind turbine operation.

Condition monitoring

High-end measuring technology ensures transparency in wind turbine operation.

Yaw system

Distributed servo drive system AMP8000 optimises the wind yield

Beckhoff technology highlights for wind turbines

A Beckhoff Embedded PC with line-connected I/O modules, EtherCAT as the universal communication system and TwinCAT automation software functions as the central control platform for wind turbines. Sturdy, modular and scalable hardware components as well as the utilization of industrial communication standards give turbine operators optimum protection of their investment and maximum flexibility in controller design.
A Beckhoff Embedded PC with line-connected I/O modules, EtherCAT as the universal communication system and TwinCAT automation software functions as the central control platform for wind turbines. Sturdy, modular and scalable hardware components as well as the utilization of industrial communication standards give turbine operators optimum protection of their investment and maximum flexibility in controller design.

PC-based control: the universal control platform for wind turbines

The Beckhoff control architecture is perfectly suited to the requirement profile of the wind energy industry: openness and scalability, flexibility in the design of the controller and a high degree of integration. For all product ranges, from the Industrial and Embedded PCs, Control Panels and I/O components to the automation software, Beckhoff offers modular solutions with precisely scalable performance. Interfaces for all common fieldbuses and the large signal variety of the Beckhoff I/O modules cover all types of signals and fieldbus systems that are relevant to wind power. The user can configure a performance-related controller for the specific wind turbine using Beckhoff standard components. Subsequent extensions and modifications are also possible at no great cost thanks to the modularity of this solution. The integrated PC-based control platform eliminates the “black boxes” of hardware-based safety or monitoring solutions and ensures the efficient interaction of all system components. The advantages for the users are the increased availability and thus the higher efficiency of their wind turbines as well as a reduction in hardware and engineering costs. In addition, the smooth interaction of the Beckhoff technology with industrial communication standards such as IEC 61400-25, Ethernet TCP/IP and OPC guarantees a high investment security for the user.

With PC-based control, you benefit from:

  • a universal control platform for operational management, pitch control, farm networking and condition monitoring
  • high flexibility when it comes to controller design
  • performance-related scalability
  • modular expandability
  • reduced hardware and engineering costs
  • increased efficiency and cost-effectiveness
  • improved competitiveness

Due to the comprehensive portfolio of EtherCAT I/O terminals, all common signal types can be covered, collected and recorded.
Due to the comprehensive portfolio of EtherCAT I/O terminals, all common signal types can be covered, collected and recorded.

EtherCAT: the fieldbus for the wind industry!

As a fieldbus system, EtherCAT has all of the necessary and desired properties for networking in the wind turbine and the wind farm. On account of its high bandwidth, EtherCAT not only takes care of processing all standard signals, but also high-precision measurement technology and safety technology. Fieldbus masters from standard fieldbuses can be easily implemented in the field. The system can also be set up with cable redundancy. EtherCAT can even be found in subsystems that make the highest demands on speed and time synchronicity, such as in converters.

XFC: the basis for condition monitoring and network diagnostics

The Beckhoff measurement technology, condition monitoring and network diagnostics terminals use oversampling technology to transfer raw data from the measurement directly into the CPU with up to 100 kHz. There is no pre-processing of the data and no associated loss of data in the terminal, allowing the user to utilize all of the data for the diagnostics and to make use of the software tools of their choice. The distributed clocks function of the EtherCAT Terminals allows all the data in the wind turbine or also in the wind farm to be synchronized to a timeframe much smaller than 1 µs.

Beckhoff product highlights for wind turbines

The Embedded PC device series from Beckhoff is ideally suitable for controlling wind turbines due to its performance-related scalability, its compact size and modular expandability.
The Embedded PC device series from Beckhoff is ideally suitable for controlling wind turbines due to its performance-related scalability, its compact size and modular expandability.

Powerful, reliable and flexibly extendable: the Embedded PC series for control tasks in wind turbines

The compact DIN rail PCs from the CX series with a directly connectable I/O level offer a space-saving industrial controller in the control cabinet. Beckhoff's extensive range of Embedded Controllers includes a device tailored to the budget, performance class and complexity of the control task for each application. In addition to the CPU, the individual devices from the CX series differ by the available system interfaces and power supply variants and can be plugged together and extended as a modular control system depending on the task in the wind turbine controller.

The CX family includes several basic CPU modules with different processors for adaption of the performance to suit the respective control task. For equipping a standard wind turbine, the CPUs from the Embedded PC series CX51xx have proven themselves in thousands of applications. For high-performance applications, which include measurement technology for example, the CX2030 can be used as a fanless version. The CX family of the ARM series is often used as pitch controller in the hub.

The fanless built-in Industrial PCs from the C65xx series are ideally suited for controlling a wind turbine or wind farm.
The fanless built-in Industrial PCs from the C65xx series are ideally suited for controlling a wind turbine or wind farm.

Space-saving and powerful: for controlling wind turbines and wind farms, the C65xx plays to its strengths

The highest fanless performance is provided by the C65xx series in the equipment version with an Intel® Core™ i7 processor. The Industrial PC series is designed to be installed in the panels of the control cabinet or in the rear panel of a control housing or console housing. The heat sink of the Industrial PC is fed to the outside through a suitable cutout in the control cabinet or housing panel; the power dissipation from the processor and chipset is thus given off directly to the surroundings. Integrated seals provide for an IP 65 closure. This enables high thermal stability and at the same time fanless operation. Industrial PCs of type C65xx can hence be constructed completely without rotating parts.

In many wind turbines, also offshore, and in wind farms, this Industrial PC series demonstrates its high performance in the turbine’s or wind farm’s control system.

The EL3783 power monitoring terminal enables fast detection of a voltage drop.
The EL3783 power monitoring terminal enables fast detection of a voltage drop.

EtherCAT Terminals integrate network monitoring and power measurement in the control system

For the purpose of independent power measurement and network diagnostics, Beckhoff offers a very powerful and cost-effective variant:

  • The EL3453 measures galvanically isolated 3-phase current (up to 5 A) and 3-phase voltage (up to 690 V). The resulting average values, such as power, frequency, cos φ, etc. and of course current and voltage, are transferred to the CPU after every half a mains period (10 ms).
  • The EL3783, which is equipped with the same physical properties as the EL3453, measures current and voltage with a frequency of 20 kHz. From this raw data, all average values can be calculated on the CPU (e.g., with the help of the TwinCAT power monitoring library TF3650). It is thereby possible to perform a grid analysis up to the 110th harmonic.

The TwinCAT 3 Wind Framework combines Industrie 4.0 technology with the Beckhoff wind expertise.
The TwinCAT 3 Wind Framework combines Industrie 4.0 technology with the Beckhoff wind expertise.

TwinCAT 3 Wind enables the implementation of Industrie 4.0 concepts in wind energy

With the increasing importance of wind energy and the installation of large wind farms, the demands on the availability and diagnostic capability of wind turbines and fast grid response times are also increasing. Industrie 4.0 technologies can be used for the direct benefit of system manufacturers, electricity producers, consumers and grid operators. With TwinCAT 3 Wind, the new software framework for the automation of wind turbines, Beckhoff picks up on the ideas and methods of Industrie 4.0 and makes them available to users in the form of secure vertical and horizontal communication, big data applications and integrated engineering. More than 100 man-years of experience have gone into the creation of this framework.

Standardized protocols simplify the communication with wind turbines

With the growth of renewable energies worldwide, it has become necessary for power generators and grid operators to acquire a way of controlling these “power stations”. For this purpose, Beckhoff has developed standardized telecontrol protocols, which are available as libraries in the TwinCAT automation system.