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A modular and cost-effective superconducting generator design for offshore wind turbines

Keysan, Ozan
Mueller, Markus
Superconducting generators have the potential to reduce the tower head mass for large (similar to 10 MW) offshore wind turbines. However, a high temperature superconductor generator should be as reliable as conventional generators for successful entry into the market. Most of the proposed designs use the superconducting synchronous generator concept, which has a higher cost than conventional generators and suffers from reliability issues. In this paper, a novel claw pole type of superconducting machine is presented. The design has a stationary superconducting field winding, which simplifies the design and increases the reliability. The machine can be operated in independent modules; thus even if one of the sections fails, the rest can operate until the next planned maintenance. Another advantage of the design is the very low superconducting wire requirement; a 10 MW, 10 rpm design is presented which uses 13 km of MgB2 wire at 30 K. The outer diameter of the machine is 6.63 m and it weighs 184 tonnes including the structural mass. The design is thought to be a good candidate for entering the renewable energy market, with its low cost and robust structure.