The integration of the wind energy software with the hardware can increase energy production by as much as 20%

A Breakdown of the Digital Wind Farm

When it was invented in 1887, the wind turbine represented a new way of thinking about wind, power, and energy, and now, more than 125 years later, GE is helping it be innovative once more with the introduction of the Digital Wind Farm.

But how does it work? Keith Longtin, general manager for wind products at GE Renewable Energy, explains: “Every wind farm has a unique profile, like DNA or a fingerprint. We thought if we could capture data from the machines about how they interact with the landscape and the wind, we could build a digital twin for each wind farm inside a computer, use it to design the most efficient turbine for each pad on the farm, and then keep optimizing the whole thing.”

The Digital Wind Farm consists of two key parts: a 2MW wind turbine, and wind power software that can monitor and optimize the turbine as it runs and generates energy. The integration of the wind energy software with the hardware can increase energy production by as much as 20%, creating around $100 million in extra revenue over the wind turbine’s life.

The Digital Wind Farm starts with the digital twin, a cloud-based model of a wind farm. With digital twin technology, engineers can mix and match up to 20 different turbine configurations to make sure they are building the best wind turbine possible for the real-life location of the farm. Once the physical wind turbine is installed, the digital twin model can really get to work—collecting and analyzing data from its real-life counterpart, and providing suggestions to make it even more efficient. The concept of the digital twin software has been used for GE gas turbines, as well, with great results.

“This is a real-time analytical engine using deep data science and machine learning,” says Ganesh Bell, chief digital officer at GE Power. “There is a lot of physics built into it. We get a picture that feels real, just like driving a car in a new video game.”

Read the full story at http://www.gereports.com/post/119300678660/wind-in-the-cloud-how-the-digital-wind-farm-will/