Offshore wind power applications are similar to onshore wind turbine projects. Both require careful planning during the construction phase, and are well-suited for management from a remote central control center. In order to keep the installation cost at a reasonable level, most wind turbine sites are made up of many turbines. In fact, the turbines are often erected in rows, in the same way that crops are planted.
System Requirements
Location in Harsh Environments
Most offshore wind turbine projects are located along coastlines where the wind speed is greater than it is onshore. However, offshore environments are often subject to critical conditions, such as corrosion and extreme temperatures, making safety certification and long MTBF a must. Since wind power plants require a huge investment of time and money, designers must select high quality products with specialized features.
Large-scale Transmission Network
Electric transmission lines and network control lines are buried under the seabed. In some cases, the first wind turbine site is located more than 3 km from the control center. An inefficient network design can dramatically increase the cost of cabling. For this reason, determining an appropriate location for each wind turbine, and implementing a reliable network with nonstop network communication can have a big impact on future maintenance costs.
Easy Maintenance
The cost of sending engineers to a wind turbine site to collect power meter data or to conduct regular maintenance can be very high. This is particularly true since ships or helicopters must be used for transportation. Traditionally, maintenance technicians were winched down to the wind turbine platform from a helicopter if the sea was too rough to approach the structure by boat. Not only is it expensive to rent a helicopter or boat, but it is also extremely dangerous to send engineers into such a hazardous area. Moreover, if the weather conditions are particularly fierce, then work on the wind turbine may need to be postponed for an unknown amount of time. Being able to set up a reliable control network with a SCADA system can greatly simplify the task of managing and controlling an offshore wind turbine farm.
Control Network
Ethernet is the perfect solution for reducing the total cost of setting up and maintaining a communication network. By using Ethernet, engineers do not need to learn proprietary protocols, which are only supported by specific vendors at a high price. Engineers can also concentrate on determining which product functions and features are needed.
Architecture for a Wind Turbine Control Network
    Moxa's Solutions  
  Characteristics of Offshore Wind Turbine Applications
  Control center and wind turbines are separated by vast distances
  Products must be of high quality and have a long MTBF
  Cost-effective redundant structure that reduces cabling cost and allows future redundancy
  Corrosion protection
  Extreme operating temperatures
  Moxa's Networking Solution
  Single-mode FM (up to 80 km) and multi-mode FX (up to 5 km)
  Moxa networking products have a long MTBF, and comes with a solid 3 and 5-year warranty
  The recovery time of a Turbo Ring and Turbo Chain redundant system is less than 20 ms
  Strong aluminum casing
  A -40 to 75°C temperature range (wide temp models)
  Rugged design with maritime certifications for extreme marine environments (DNV/GL/ABS/LR/NK)
  Key Products
  EDS-728, 24+4G-port modular managed switch
  EDS-408A, 8-port managed switches with 3 Fiber ports
  EDS-208A, 8-port unmanaged switches
  MXview industrial network management software and EDS SNMP-OPC Server Pro

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