Success story: Advanced yaw control system

Success story: Advanced yaw control system

Adwen has incorporated Bonfiglioli's mechatronic solution, the advanced YAW system, into the industry's highest annual power production turbine, the AD 8-180, drastically reducing downtime and maintenance.

Adwen is a leading company in the offshore wind industry, with more than 600 MW installed offshore and close to 2 GW in pipeline. The company was founded in 2015 with the purpose to develop innovative solutions and total reliability aimed at lowering the Levelised Cost of Energy (LCoE) of offshore wind energy.

The new AD 8-180 turbine provides a 180-meter diameter rotor and the highest annual energy production (AEP) in the industry. 


The action of sudden wind changes on the wind turbine mechanics causes, in most cases, numerous failures on the gearmotors that control the rotation of the nacelle.

These failures cause broken gear units (planetary, broken shafts, broken pinions), burnt motors and brakes, which can even affect the crown wheel teeth. All these problems result in significant economic losses, not only due to the obvious replacement of the damaged equipment, but also, and especially, because of the dreaded production downtime. Such downtime can easily exceed the material cost of the failure.

Sustainable Mechatronic Solution by Bonfiglioli

The Advanced Yaw Control System was created with the purpose of protecting and controlling the state of the mechanics involved in the nacelle's rotation, highlighting these features:

- Protection of the mechanical installation (motor + brake + gear unit + crown wheel).
- Smoothness of movement through the programming of acceleration and braking ramps that guarantee the correct coupling between pinion and crown wheel.
- Individual control of the motors performing the rotation.
- Gearmotor failure detection.
- Remote monitoring and control system.
- Fast integration into existing systems.

Low Maintenance

The integration of power electronics in Bonfiglioli's Advanced Yaw Control System ensures greater control of motor current, thus extending motor life and ensuring greater availability against overload problems.

It also manages to protect the associated mechanics, thus increasing the availability of the wind turbine and reducing the number of failures. It offers the possibility of manual / automatic control from the front for maintenance actions.

Bonfiglioli equipment supplied:

•    7.5 kW AGILE series frequency inverters
•    6-pole three-phase BN motors
•    Trasmital 716 T planetary gear units

Final assessment

The customer pointed out that with this advanced Yaw system Bonfiglioli has greater control over the current of the motors, thus extending motor life and ensuring greater availability against overload problems. It increases the availability of the wind turbine and reduces the number of failures, adding that now with this system they are able to detect the idle rotation of motors with broken shafts, thus avoiding a cascade effect and the failure being transferred to the rest of the motors.

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Product Range Catalogue - Wind Industry

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