No one expected it. When the Division first began the 5㎿ offshore wind turbine development project in 2008 as the leader of Korea’s wind power industry, there was a vague hope. Moreover, the Division has been recognized for its technological skills by acquiring an international certification of Korea’s first geared-type 750㎾ and 2㎿ wind turbine, but development did not show much progress as expected.
“Hyosung has begun development as it was selected as the host company for the ‘5㎿ large offshore wind power system development’ project, which is the new and renewable energy technological development project by the Ministry of Knowledge Economy in 2008. At the time, there was no company that mass-produced 5㎿ offshore wind turbine and generator. We didn’t know what to do, as we all did not have any reference or technicians with the relevant experience.”
Development Team Manager Han Dong-young says the entire process from design and production of the generator to performance test consisted of endless trials, errors and challenges. Moreover, the model developed in 2008 when they began the business was mostly asynchronous generators, but three years later in 2011, large offshore wind turbine generators worldwide were mostly synchronous generators with high efficiency. Accordingly, the Wind Energy Business Division decided to completely modify the original model to permanent magnet synchronous generators.
Two years remained until the point of assembly. Deputy Department Head Gang Jong-ho, having the start all over from preliminary design in such a tight schedule, flew to Europe. He personally visited five leading global companies in Europe for two weeks, conducting technical meetings and having a tour of their plants to collect information for generator development and design concept. It took four months to complete the preliminary design. They still had a long way to go, with design verification, production, assembly and performance test. They were not sure whether they would finish the project within the deadline, let alone be sure of the generator performance. However, the teamwork of the Wind Energy Business Division came through in the crisis.
“Benchmarking was not easy for this development, as there were no prior technologies. That is why we chose to establish a network of relevant professionals. In the end, cooperation with outside professional institutions was most important: maximizing the performance of each institution, coordinating ideas, and creating an optimum design.”
The gap between design and production was especially an issue. When they completed the preliminary design, the production department stated that they cannot produce the product as designed. They wanted to stick to the existing verified method, while the Development Team requested the implementation of an innovative concept to complete a competitive generator. The two parties were in a bitter tug-of-war with no time to spare. At that time, Senior Vice President GwonGi-young personally met with the production manager and settled the issue. Since then, if a conflict or problem arose in the cooperation process, Senior Vice President GwonGi-young and Team Manager Han Dong-young unconditionally supported the members of the team by persuading the relevant institutions and working groups. It would have been impossible without full, wholehearted faith in the team members.
The process of performance test after production was also a challenge. They could not find an appropriate place to build the test facilities for the performance test. After countless discussions, they prepared a space in a corner of the high-tension motor pilot plant, where they built the test facilities to test the system interconnection of the 5㎿ generator and converter in the biting winds of the winter in 2012. The facilities were of such outstanding technology that Korea’s best test agency such as the Korea Electrotechnology Research Institute came to visit Hyosung’s test facilities. It was a close call, but the Wind Energy Business Division Development Team had clear aiming and responsibility for success, driving them to overcome the piercing winter cold.
Moreover, the offshore wind turbine 5.9㎿ generator created by the best technology, innovative development process, and teamwork of the Wind Energy Business Division with trust and responsibility of each role achieved recognition for its quality by acquiring certification from DEWI-OCC, an international certification agency in Germany. Furthermore, the benchmarking test result with the world’s top company generator proved that Hyosung product had the best power quality with low (1/3) THD (Total Harmonic Distortion), which is a diagnosis of the distortion factor of harmonic waves to evaluate power quality.
The Wind Energy Business Division went through tumultuous times with such a huge project to develop Korea’s first offshore wind turbine 5.9㎿ generator. They had to spend two years with endless business meetings and overtime work all night, but the Division members say they are happy to have learned so many things from this project. The success of generator development with the technological skills proved to be the best in the world is also meaningful, but they are more proud to have made such an accomplishment with persistent spirit and full faith for the members in carrying out a project from which no one seemed to expect success. Moreover, the Wind Energy Business Division is determined to grow into a global leader to lead new and renewable energy in not only Korea but the whole world based on the success of developing the world’s top-class offshore wind turbine 5.9㎿ generator. They will be the leader of tomorrow that creates future energy.