Finland is home to leading equipment manufacturers for wind power plants. We have located a new niche market. When experts find ways of combining their special expertise in such niche markets, genuine product development and synergies are the result. Solutions by turbine manufacturer WinWinD have gained a foothold in the international market. WinWinD produces 1 MW and 3 MW wind turbines, which are efficient even at lower wind speeds. Adwatec Oy is a Finnish engineering company specializing in the design and supply of cooling systems for power electronics. This company cooperates with WinWinD in wind power cooling solutions. Due to the low number of water cooling system suppliers in Europe, Adwatec has business opportunities on the worldwide wind power markets. For enclosure solutions protecting technology and its physical connections, Adwatec has chosen to partner with Ensto.
Ensto supplies thermoplastic enclosure solutions for wind power applications. These are required for wind power plant enclosure systems – control systems, water-based cooling, deicing systems required in harsh winter conditions, and alert light solutions.
‘The number of water-based cooling systems for power electronics is set to increase in the days to come. With power components being crammed into increasingly compact spaces, air cooling is no longer sufficient. In such cases, water-based cooling is practically the only effective cooling solution,’ says Veli-Heikki Pihlaja, responsible for automation and technical support at Adwatec.
‘Power plant structures pose technological challenges in general, since the latest power plants to be built in Europe reach up to 130m. It goes without saying that, when equipment needs to operate in compact spaces at such heights, it must be reliable. Servicing is extremely difficult. The very design of a cooling system must be based on small-scale solutions. Because of static electricity, grounding must be more efficient than usual,’ explains Veli-Heikki Pihlaja.
‘Ensto supplies metal enclosures, customized to meet our system’s dimensions, as connection boxes between the windmill and the cooling system. Enclosures come complete with required openings . For this reason, we have no need to invest in an automated processing line, since we obtain the enclosures with precisely the right openings and fully finished, all the way down to the openings themselves. Before installation, we equip the enclosures with quick couplings. This minimizes the need to perform installation measures in the challenging conditions of a machine room, located high up in a wind power plant.’
‘We chose Ensto on the basis of our long-standing cooperation. We know that Ensto can supply even small, tailor-made production series, cost-efficiently and flexibly. In this case, too, cooperation began with a suitably sized standard enclosure. With standard dimensions and colors, no extra costs are incurred. Combined with flexible and rapid delivery, customization transforms cooperation into a partnership,’ concludes Mr Pihlaja.