Power and Electronics Draft– DEX

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General Power and Control Electronics  

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As the global demand for electricity has surged, so too has the demand for alternative, sustainable sources of energy, including renewable energy. According to Ember, an independent energy think tank, clean and renewable energy sources accounted for a record 38% of the world’s electricity generation in 2021, an increase from 29% the previous year.


Wind energy is among the fastest-growing sectors in renewable energy, commanding the second-largest share of the clean power market behind only solar and potentially providing more than one-third of the world’s global power needs, per a report from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).


With state-of-the-art manufacturing and repair facilities as well as a reliable and resilient global supply chain, DEX provides the parts, support, and services necessary to sustain your growing renewable power operations and prepare them for the future.


Power and Electronics Draft

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How Do Wind Turbines Work?

While their look has modernized, wind turbines and windmills have been used for centuries to generate power. Renewed interest in its potential sparked in the late 1970s as a result of oil shortages and the industry has benefitted from steady growth, increasing investment, and technological innovation ever since.


Unlike conventional methods of energy supply, wind turbines emit no greenhouse gasses or air pollutants and are comparable in costs to other resource-intensive power generation. Wind turbines generate electricity by turning the kinetic energy of wind into mechanical power. A generator then converts the mechanical energy into electrical energy.



While wind turbines are complex machines consisting of many moving parts, they have three primary components:

  • The support tower or mast. This serves as the support structure for the turbine. The tower is securely attached to a concrete foundation pad.
  • The rotor blades. Most modern wind turbines have three rotor blades which function much like aircraft wings or helicopter blades, with a curved side and a flat side. Wind blowing across the curved edges creates a pressure differential between either side of each blade, forcing them to turn.
  • The nacelle. The nacelle, mounted at the top of the tower, houses the power generation systems and electrical components of the wind turbine, such as the gearbox assembly, the aerodynamic braking system, the electrical power transmission system, and the power converters and control boards. The nacelle is also home to the controller, which serves as the “brains” of the wind turbine and is responsible for optimizing energy production and monitoring the condition of the turbine.
Power and Electronics Draft
Power and Electronics Draft

Troubleshooting Wind Turbines


Wind turbines are designed to withstand heavy use in challenging weather conditions, but as with any electrically-driven machine, component failure or malfunction is inevitable. Problems can occur at every level, from the blades or nacelle to medium-level subsystems, such as a capacitor failure or burnt pitch system. Even something as small as a printed circuit board (PCB) malfunction or error can take a wind turbine–or even an entire wind farm–offline. .


More than half of all wind turbine malfunctions are due to failures within the control electronics, electrical systems, and sensors, and nearly 40% of electrical-related downtime is a result of defective components in the power module and electrical control systems. These costly problems can occur as a result of external factors like lightning strikes or condensation or from simple wear and tear of parts.


Common electrical problems for wind turbines include:

  • Failing main power convertor
  • Failed printed circuit boards
  • Malfunctioning anemometers
  • Misaligned wind directional tracking systems
  • Malfunctioning calibration systems
  • Faulty electrolytic capacitors
  • Poorly designed transistors
  • IGBT-module or other power semiconductor failure
  • Obsolete units
  • Failing power modules

Improve the Performance and Reliability of Your Wind Turbines with DEX


The maturation and evolution of the Renewable Energy sector means more and more wind turbines are falling out of their manufacturers’ warranty period, making more and more parts obsolete. Support documentation becomes unavailable and options to proceed in the face of failure grow increasingly limited, occurring during costly downtime.


When malfunctions and failure strike, you need a proven strategy to get back online. DEX’s cost-effective, best-in-class Repair, Parts, and Manufacturing Solutions are designed to improve the performance of your wind turbines, extend the life of your components–even your obsolete and out-of-production ones–reduce overall costs and downtime. All of our services are performed by A+ certified industrial electronic technicians in our highly efficient, triple ISO-certified facilities. We’re proud to follow industry best practices to optimize products, capture data, and improve documentation.


Manufacturing


Don’t be sidelined by irreparable components. DEX offers state-of-the-art design techniques, standards-based processes, and extensive analysis tools to provide you with the innovative, upgraded manufactured alternatives you need to keep operating. Our lean manufacturing practices all help reduce cycle times and waste.


Parts


As a trusted, open-market supplier, DEX gives you access to a worldwide sourcing network of screened, tested, certified, and warrantied replacement parts available for rapid fulfillment. We leverage our 40+ years of experience to improve lead times and agility and source hard-to-find or out-of-production parts, so end-of-life contracts don’t have to mean the end of your operation.


Repair


By repairing your defective electronic and electromechanical components, DEX’s streamlined repair process can help you reduce your replacement costs by as much as 70%. Minimize lost revenue and ensure quick, direct delivery of replacement parts with our ten-day turnaround times and Advanced Exchange program. Replacement parts are delivered directly to wind farms and the packaging reused to return non-working components to DEX for repair. After repair, products are returned to the finished goods inventory and ready to be shipped within 24-48 hours.

DEX provides repair, parts, and manufacturing services for wind turbine parts and components including, but not limited to:


  • Power Conversion Systems
  • IGBT Racks & Converters
  • Processors & Modules
  • Pitch Control Systems
  • Sensors & Drivers
  • Power Supplies
  • Control Panels
  • Fiber Optic Parts
  • Anemometer Micros
  • Measuring Modules
  • Voltage Inverters
  • Wind Vanes

DEX services, sources, and repairs parts from market brand lines large and small, current and discontinued, such as:


  • Siemens Energy (previously Siemens Gamesa)
  • Senvion & RePower (now Siemens Energy)
  • GE
  • Vestas
  • Nordex
  • Clipper
  • Suzlon

The DEX Difference for Your Wind Turbines


DEX has more than 40 years of experience providing world-class service, parts, and manufacturing for Fortune 500 companies throughout the U.S., Europe, and China. We have excelled because we continue to place proven systems, process infrastructure, and engineering core competencies at the center of everything we do. As we expand and refine our capabilities across multiple sectors, we remain committed to providing the same exceptional support and comprehensive solutions that have defined us for decades.



DEX delivers world-class service, parts, and manufacturing you need to recover from component failures quickly and extend your Mean Time Between Failures (MTBF). Contact us today to find out more.