POWER Engineers has completed work on a control system to directly manage the output at the Canadian Hills Wind Project, the largest wind farm in Oklahoma, U.S.
POWER drew heavily on the emerging international standard known as IEC 61850 — including an extension of the standard known as IEC 61400-25 specific to wind turbines — to provide an all-encompassing solution to control turbine and substation systems at the approximately 300-MW wind farm.
Canadian Hills, which recently completed construction near Oklahoma City, is owned by Atlantic Power Corp., which finalized the purchase of the US$470 million wind farm from developer Apex Wind Energy Inc. in March 2012.
POWER incorporated a real-time automation controller that uses IEC 61850 protocols to command many of the wind farm’s 135 turbines, managing both real and reactive power. That level of control will be crucial at Canadian Hills, where output is governed by five power purchase agreements and will have to be curtailed and metered for each agreement.
The International Electrotechnical Commission established IEC 61850 to standardize substation Ethernet networks, promote interoperability of equipment using object-oriented data models and provide more information for better control systems. The idea is to generate more useful information at lower cost than present-day designs.
Construction at the Canadian Hills project began in April 2012, and commercial operations began in December 2012.
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