A Siemens wind turbine concept is designed with a sensing system for wind sensor – CPU communication control. This enables the wind turbine to shut down when wind speeds exceeds a specified level to prevent damages. By shifting to Biomicore’s technology, Siemens will be able to reduce the operational expenditures with a high 2-digit or low 3-digit USD figure.
A Siemens wind turbine concept is designed with the sensing system for wind sensor – CPU communication control. The sensing system involves 2 Safety Communication Modules (SCM) provided by their sub-vendor, PAJ Systemteknik. Each SCM consists of 2 FPGAs among others, and each FPGA has a failure rate of 1 every 4.5 years. A sensing system covering the 2 SCMs thus has a failure rate of 1 every 2.25 years. The cost of one SCM fault in an offshore wind turbine is estimated at USD 18-360,000.
Hence, the average yearly direct expense per sensing system in an offshore wind turbine is USD 8,000–160,000. On top of the direct expense is added further 66% hereof (indirect expenses as labour, administration, etc.) as well as lost revenue of USD 13,000 (based on a 6 days average downtime of USD 5,000 per day). The total expenses related to SCMs faults in the sensing system of an offshore wind turbine is thus approximately USD 26,000-279,000 per year.
Siemens has built 500+ offshore wind turbines the past 20 years (the life time of a wind turbine is 20 years). The cumulative expenses concerning SCMs faults in sensing systems of these 500 offshore wind turbines amounts to USD 13-140 M per year. A Siemens wind turbine holds other functionality involving FPGAs, which we have not considered here – and Siemens total capacity also involves additional 800 onshore turbines.
A solution based on Biomicore technology would reduce the fault related expenditure to very close to 0. Further more, if a fault would occur on a Biomicore solution, the SCM would continue to operate, thus allowing a significant reduction in maintenance costs. The marginal production cost involved with Biomicore’s solution would be insignificant. (As a matter of fact, in a Biomicore based SCM the number of FPGAs per unit would be reduced from two to one.)