PROJECT | Cesar Tordesillas, Australia

AMSC to supply Collgar grid interconnection system

Vestas Australian Wind Technology has placed an order with AMSC for a large D-VAR-based grid interconnection system.

This is American Superconductor Corporation's largest order for a grid interconnection system to date.

The solution, which uses 24 D-VAR modules integrated with external smart-switched capacitor banks and proprietary AMSC controls optimised for wind farm applications, will be utilised to meet local grid interconnection requirements for the 206 megawatt Collgar Wind Farm under construction in Western Australia. AMSC expects to deliver the D-VAR equipment to Vestas within approximately 12 months. AMSC's grid interconnection solutions are already connecting more than one-third of Australia's wind power to the power grid.

As is the case in a number of countries around the world, Australia is increasing its commitment to utilise clean, renewable energy to lower pollutants and meet rising power demands. A recently enacted law requires that 20 percent of all of Australia's electricity be generated from renewable sources by 2020.

Located approximately 25 kilometers southeast of Merredin in Western Australia, the Collgar Wind Farm is being developed jointly by Investec Bank (Australia) Limited and Windlab Systems Pty Ltd. At 206 MW, Collgar is larger than any wind farm currently operating in Australia. Construction of the Collgar Wind Farm is scheduled to commence in the first half of 2010 and be completed by the end of 2011.

"Australia was among the first countries to adopt dynamic voltage control requirements for wind farms connecting to the utility grid," said Timothy Poor, Senior Vice President of Global Sales and Business Development at AMSC. "We expect that additional countries around the world will adopt similar strict dynamic voltage control requirements to more effectively control power flows stemming from the utility-scale wind farms and solar power plants that are being installed around the world. This, in turn, will help expand our addressable market."

The Collgar Wind Farm will be AMSC's eighth D-VAR system deployment in Australia. AMSC currently is connecting nearly 600 MW of wind power to Australia's grid, representing more than one-third of the country’s 1,700 MW of wind power capacity at the end of 2009 according to the Global Wind Energy Council.

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