In China, wind power generation has become one of the important energy sources for economic and social development.
In recent years, China’s wind power industry has developed rapidly, and wind power, as a clean and efficient way of energy, will play an important role in the construction of society in the future.
However, wind turbines will produce a lot of dust and high temperature, high pressure, and other harsh environment in work, if not controlled will cause great harm to the power grid.
Wind turbines are mainly composed of power cables and booster cables. Among them, power cables are divided into two categories: power cables and control cables.
Power cables have the advantages of compact structure, easy installation, lightweight, long service life, safety, and reliability, and are suitable for complex environments. And control cables are mainly designed and manufactured to improve the reliability of the grid and the wires used in electrical devices.
1. The Role Of The Cable In The Operation Of Wind Power
Power cables in wind power operation mainly play the following roles: support the wind turbine, so that its stable operation. Carry the weight of the cable, to ensure that it is not broken.
Provide stable voltage in the wind power system and prevent the cable from failure due to heat, vibration, and discharge; improve the reliability of the wind power system electrical equipment.
Provide wind farm power supply to ensure the safe and stable operation of the wind power generation system.
In the wind power system, there is a problem of mutual influence between electrical equipment. With the development of the wind power industry and the increasing capacity of wind farm equipment, more and more wires are used in wind farms, of which cables occupy a considerable proportion.
So the cable to meet the different characteristics of the power supply lines in different wind farms and wind farms operating conditions on the cable to put forward different requirements to ensure efficient operation of the cable in the entire wind power system.
The following is an introduction to the wind power cable in different cases on the wind farm power supply reliability and power transmission characteristics brought about by the impact.
1.1 Support For Stable Operation Of Wind Turbines
Wind turbines in operation need to ensure the stability of the entire wind farm environment, to ensure that the wind turbines can be stable operation, you need to ensure that the cable can be stable operation.
Ensure that the cable will not affect the safety between the wind turbine and the power grid because of operational reasons. In wind turbine operation, the most important task is to ensure that the entire wind farm environment is stable as well as the voltage is constant.
The operation of the wind turbine in the wind farm directly affects the performance of the electrical equipment in the entire wind farm, so stability is critical to the wind farm.
Many factors affect the performance indicators of the wind turbine itself, such as wind power and wind speed variations.
These factors have a large impact on the operation of the cable, which needs to provide a stable power supply to the wind turbine.
The wind turbine needs to maintain a certain angle and maintain certain stability at the right time, to ensure that the entire fan can be safe and stable operation.
Wind power cables also need to ensure that a certain area of the cable can maintain a certain tension to ensure that the cable is sufficient to support the operation of the wind turbine.
Therefore, all electrical equipment in the wind power system is a critical component of the cable, which plays a vital role in the operation of the wind turbine.
1.2 Power Transmission Characteristics
Wind farm power transmission characteristics include wind farm operation due to wind speed in the wind farm, ensuring the normal operation of wind farm equipment, ensuring that the cable can provide sufficient current, to ensure that the wind farm power transmission will not be caused by cable overheating and failure.
Therefore, in the future wind farm power supply process in the cable structure to ensure that there is sufficient strength to withstand large loads.
At the same time, it is also necessary to ensure that the wire and cable are in stable operating conditions, the cable can reduce the occurrence of overheating problems.
At the same time, it ensures that the cable corrosion resistance premise can make the cable life longer.
In addition, the wind power equipment requirements for voltage are also relatively high. So in the wind farm power transmission process to ensure that the cable can meet that requirement, only then can ensure the stable operation of wind power equipment.
1.3 Wind Power Transmission
Wind power transmission mainly refers to the wind turbine-generated electricity to the wind turbine equipment throughout the operation process, in the operation process of the large amount of electrical energy generated directly to the wind turbine in the wind farm on the wind wheel.
And wind power transmission when the cable plays a role in supporting the wind farm’s important electrical equipment and the stable operation of the motor. Therefore, to ensure the safe and stable operation of the entire wind power system, it is necessary to meet the high-speed transmission requirements.
At present, the cables used on wind turbines in wind farms are generally made of cross-linked polyethylene (PE).
Cross-linked polyethylene is a relatively stable and non-toxic material, which is a high-strength synthetic fiber.
Its surface is smooth and non-porous, and its interior has excellent heat dissipation properties.
Through the production process, cross-linked polyethylene can form a very stable insulating film with good insulation properties.
2. Demand For Cables In The Wind Power Industry
China is the world’s largest installed wind power generation, the wind power industry has developed rapidly in recent years, and in 2017, China’s installed wind power capacity reached 35 million kilowatts, accounting for 7% of the total installed capacity of the country.
Among them, 7.6 million kilowatts of wind turbines, accounting for 16%, the future wind power industry will show a rapid growth momentum. China’s annual new wind power is mainly concentrated in Xinjiang, Gansu, Inner Mongolia, and other northwest areas, these areas have a harsh climate, environmental vulnerability, and relatively low wind speed and other conditions that limit the development of local wind turbines.
In addition, China’s wind power companies are also facing the pressure of increasing the number of units (more than 100,000 units) and the rising cost of operation and maintenance (the proportion of the cost to power generation is rising). So wind turbines all need to choose the right cable products for their characteristics and application environment.
The global wind power market is currently divided into two main phases – the medium-term market and the end-term market. The short- to medium-term market is dominated by the U.S. market, while the domestic wind power industry is still in the development period.
The medium-term market includes the United States, Japan China, mainly including the United States and China.
The medium-term market is the largest incremental market in the U.S. wind energy market in the past 10 years, and this is the main reason why wind power companies have been targeted here.
The U.S. is the largest market for wind power, with global installed wind power capacity expected to exceed 16 million kilowatts by 2024.
Japan, the most developed country in the new energy industry, currently accounts for about one-third of the country’s installed wind power capacity.
Meanwhile, the U.S. wind power industry is well-developed and rich in wind energy resources, with a new installed capacity of 2.2 million kilowatts per year.
Medium-term market due to the impact of the U.S. wind power policy, wind power equipment needs to be recognized by more countries and regions.
The medium-term market is the rapid development of wind energy in Europe and the United States in the past 10 years, so the cable has put forward higher requirements.
3. Wind Power Cable Product Categories And Application Status
From the type of wind turbine cable, the current wind power cable main products include: wind power distribution lines with copper-core shielded power cable, suitable for low wind speed, low voltage, high frequency, and long-distance transmission lines, is an important communication line in areas where wind energy resources are scarce.
And the cable insulation shield and main insulation use homogeneous materials, good temperature resistance, and high reliability, and can shield and inhibit harmful clutter, and noise, suitable for operation in high and medium wind speed areas.
Boost cable is the most common wind power transmission line cable, suitable for the low-voltage operating environment and low-voltage operating conditions.
Wind turbine cables are most widely used in wind power development projects and have now begun to promote in the country.
With China’s growing market demand for wind power, industry concentration and further increase in future market concentration, wind power cables will usher in explosive growth.
However, the current domestic market for wind power cable product categories is limited, wind power cable market size is also relatively limited, so companies need to increase research and development efforts and improve production efficiency to achieve large-scale development.
3.1 Wind Power Cable Product Demand Structure
In the wind power product demand structure, the demand related to power cables is mainly concentrated in the wind power equipment operating environment and high-voltage distribution lines using demand, while low-voltage cables in China’s wind power development project application ratio is relatively low.
Therefore, the wind power industry will continue to grow rapidly in the coming period, which also brings new development opportunities for the wind power cable industry.
Due to the lack of wind energy resources in China, offshore wind power is affected by climate conditions, so China’s wind power industry has begun to gradually move toward the scale of the development stage.
In China onshore and offshore wind power accounted for 81% and 18% respectively. In the European region, wind power accounted for 6%. The share of wind power in Japan is 15%. The share of wind power in South Korea is 6%. 8% in Europe. 7% in Africa. In other regions, wind power accounted for only 2%.
From the perspective of the demand structure, in the future of China’s wind power industry market, the proportion of low-voltage cables will continue to increase, while boost cables will gradually be replaced as power cables, in the future wind power industry will further increase its proportion.
3.2 Technology Route Selection
According to the current situation of China’s wind power development, wind turbines generally have to use the “three types of three straight” cable, that is, direct buried, grid-connected, boosted cable.
But because of China’s power grid technology and the world’s advanced level, there is still a gap, wind power project construction needs special equipment, so the cable technology route and equipment selection also need to be further clarified.
At present, the domestic wind power resources in areas where there is a lack of wind power and the rapid development of offshore wind power, for a variety of new technology cable products are required to study in-depth understanding.
Although the domestic market demand for offshore wind power cable products continues to grow. But it is still in the research and development stage, the future needs to meet the domestic production technology conditions, and actively with foreign advanced products for comparative research, research, and development of new products for the actual domestic situation.
In the future, with technological progress and new materials and new technology applications continuing to mature, fan cable products will also increasingly meet the requirements of the development of a new energy industry at home and abroad.
3.3 Future Market Size And Prospects
In the next few years, China’s wind power market demand is growing, in the next few years, China’s wind power project planning and construction scale will exceed 2 million kilowatts, and the demand for copper-shielded power cables will continue to increase.
At present, with the “Belt and Road” strategy and the “21st Century Maritime Silk Road” plan for the implementation and promotion, of China’s wind power industry development prospects. According to the “Wind Power Industry Analysis and Forecast Report” released by CEC, the national installed capacity of wind power will reach 16 million kilowatts in 2017, and the installed capacity of wind power will exceed 50 million kilowatts by 2020.
Because wind power is economical, affected by climate and other characteristics small, and can also be complementary to conventional energy, is one of the world’s highest use of renewable energy and gradually enter the era of clean energy.
With the continuous improvement of the global environmental governance system and the accelerated development of the wind power industry, wind power will become one of the world’s largest energy supply methods in the next few years, and the market size will reach unprecedented levels.
—ZMS Cable Group