The certification of wind turbines or components is state-of-the-art and a must in most places around the world. Furthermore, certification to harmonised requirements is an active support of export. Therefore it is important for manufacturers, banks and insurances of wind turbines and components to know the different certification processes as well as guidelines. This exclusive feature for PES puts focus on a new approach of combined design and certification of wind turbines, where an intense collaboration between the turbine designer or manufacturer and the certification body is proposed at an early stage of the turbine development.
The benefits of this approach, known as Development Accompanying Assessment (DAA), includes reduced time-to-market and improved product quality.
Certification of wind turbines has a history of 30 years. It has been applied differently in scope, requirements and depth in countries like Denmark or Germany and each on the basis of their own rules. These countries are still leading in the development and application of certification rules but during recent years a number of other countries as well as many banks realised the necessity of a thorough evaluation and certification of wind turbines and their proposed installation. Among these countries are China, Greece, India, Spain, Sweden and the USA.
Certification provides a significant contribution to the development and design of a wind turbine. The scope is on the examination of the structural integrity, safety and compliance with applicable guidelines and standards. Moreover, it adds value to the wind turbine from the marketing point of view: A reputable certificate reflects the high level of a wind turbine. For owners, banks and insurers the risk of technical and economical breakdown is obviously minimised and therewith the marketing of the wind turbine supported. Due to the complexity of modern wind turbines and their design, manufacturers who are comparatively new in the business often underestimate the extent in time and effort for certification. But even the certification of new wind turbines of experienced manufacturers takes usually no less than a year. The present article proposes a new approach for a more effective procedure for certification of wind turbines with GL.