S&C Electric Europe has won the multi-million pound contract to supply reactive compensation to EDF Energy Renewables’ Fallago Rig wind farm, one of the UK’s largest onshore wind farms. The site in the Scottish borders will consist of 48 turbines providing 144MW of renewable electricity, which can power around 90,000 homes and will form a major step forward in meeting the government’s renewable energy targets.
S&C will provide all required network studies to guarantee the system meets the National Grid’s Grid Code requirements. Unless new renewable energy sources comply with the Grid Code, energy plants cannot be linked to the grid and therefore cannot deliver or sell the energy generated.
The S&C system will be designed to meet the UK’s strict compliance testing requirements—a prerequisite for wind farms to comply with the rigorous Grid Code interconnection standards. These standards enable effective operation of renewable energy plants with the grid and include complex interconnection specifications which call for continuous voltage regulation or reactive power control with very rapid response.
Andrew Jones, Managing Director, S&C Electric Company Europe, said: “After we had provided EDF Energy Renewables with a number of alternatives, they opted for a state-of-the-art solution offering the flexibility and cost efficiency required for Fallago Rig to meet the stringent Grid Code requirements for reliability. We are delighted to be working on the Fallago Rig project and see this technology being adopted across future wind farms in the UK and elsewhere.”
To guarantee Grid Code compliance, S&C will deliver a 60MVAR PureWave DSTATCOM Distributed Static Compensator to reduce voltage variations such as sags, surges, and flicker which can result from intermittent electricity generation, along with instability caused by rapidly varying reactive power demands. S&C’s PureWave DSTATCOM is a proven solution that is used globally to connect renewable energy plants to grids.
The DSTATCOM will utilise the integral SCADA control room within the container, minimising the need for valuable substation space. S&C’s dedicated Network Study team based in Manchester will provide the required extended studies to take responsibility for and enable Grid Code compliance. Once completed in November 2012, this installed solution will benefit from a five year warranty supplied by local S&C site personnel.
Don Mackay, head of onshore construction at EDF Energy Renewables said: “The technology and consultancy from S&C has allowed us to meet the National Grid’s rigorous grid protocol necessary for the Fallago Rig wind farm to fulfill its role as a major energy supplier. We have worked with S&C on similar projects in the past and are delighted to be working with them at Fallago to ensure we build the most efficient wind farms employing the latest low carbon technology.”
Utilities are faced with ever more stringent reactive requirements for delivering wholesale power to meet the UK’s energy demand. This is exacerbated by the increasing number of wind farms being added to the system which tend to behave differently than conventional plant. Reactive compensation is often necessary to meet these stringent requirements and comply with the Grid Code.
The National Grid implemented the Grid Code to permit the development, maintenance and operation of an efficient, co-ordinated and economical system for the transmission of electricity, to promote the security and efficiency of the power system as a whole. Unlike mainland Europe, any utilities investing in bringing distributed sources on stream onto the UK grid transmission system are required to comply with the Grid Code.