Knowledge Centre

Wind farm downtime defence – How transformer monitoring can lead asset managers to operational success.

19th July 2022

The UK government has set targets for 50 gigawatts of the electricity to be generated by wind by the end of the decade. This has placed a growing pressure on asset managers to ensure the availability of assets. Without visibility of assets and their condition, wind farm asset managers can only react to issues as they are taking place, causing downtime and costly interruptions to supply.

A high-voltage step-up transformer is the critical link to the electricity network and is key to maximising availability. Transformers are one the most complex components on a windfarm; they can be subject to different kinds of technical issues. They have a design life that nominally is at least the typical 25-year life of the wind farm. However, transformers can develop faults well before the end of their life expectancy, leading to failure and ultimately downtime for the wind farm.

With the complexity of wind farms becoming greater, it’s not always possible to have an expert for each individual component and just having visibility isn’t enough to reduce the risk of critical failure to the asset. Performing the correct action based on the data provided by a transformer monitoring system is often the most difficult step, even for experienced asset managers.

Interpretation and analysis of this data is critical to successful asset management. Data overload and a lack of experts’ time have combined to dictate the need for advanced data solutions and digital expert services, which provide asset managers with data-driven insights to help them manage their transformer fleet more effectively. This can also be supported with insights and prescriptive actions which offer a more realistic view of each asset’s health, and determine the impact it has on safety, reliability, and risk to revenue.

With the help of holistic transformer monitoring solutions, faults can be identified ahead of time, enabling interventions to be planned to minimise the potential risk of downtime and enable proactive maintenance strategies. To find out how Kelvatek can optimise your transformer monitoring strategy, please get in touch.

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