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Designing and Basic Experimental Validation of the World's First MW-Class Direct-Drive Superconducting Wind Turbine Generator

: Song, X.; Bührer, C.; Brutsaert, P.; Krause, J.; Ammar, A.; Wiezoreck, J.; Hansen, J.; Rebsdorf, A.V.; Dhalle, M.; Bergen, A.; Winkler, T.; Wessel, S.; Brake, M.T.; Kellers, J.; Pütz, H.; Bauer, M.; Kyling, H.; Boy, H.; Seitz, E.


IEEE transactions on energy conversion 34 (2019), Nr.4, S.2218-2225
ISSN: 0885-8969
Fraunhofer IWES ()

High temperature superconducting (HTS) technologies are expected to be a key enabler for lightweight and cost-effective direct-drive (DD) trains for large wind turbines. This paper reports the designing and basic experimental validation of the world's first full-scale DD HTS generator demonstrated on a commercial wind turbine. The HTS generator has its rotor with an HTS field winding working below 30 K, which is achieved by using off-the-shelf Gifford-McMahon cryocoolers. The stator of the generator is essentially conventional, except that the armature winding has four segments to limit fault torques in case of sudden short circuits due to converter failures. Compared to an existing DD permanent magnet generator on the turbine, the air gap shearing stress of the HTS generator is doubled, and the weight is reduced by 24%. The overall design requirements from the turbine integration perspective, as well as the topological considerations, are first described in this paper. The electromagnetic and cryogenic designs are then presented, followed by performance testing of HTS coils. The basic experimental validation shows that the cryogenic design is satisfactory and the measured no-load voltage matches the finite element calculation very well.