Potential of MgB2 superconductors in direct drive generators for wind turbines

Asger Bech Abrahamsen, Dong Liu, Niklas Magnusson, Henk Polinder

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    Topologies of superconducting direct drive wind turbine generators are based on a combination of superconducting wires wound into field coils, copper armature windings, steel laminates to shape the magnetic flux density and finally structural materials as support. But what is the most optimal topology for superconducting wind turbine generators? This question is investigated by assuming some unit cost of the different materials and then minimizing the cost of the active materials of a 10 MW and 9.65 rpm direct drive wind turbine generator intended to be mounted in front of the INNWIND.EU King-Pin concept nacelle. A series of topologies are investigate by adding more iron components to the generator, such as rotor back iron, field winding pole, magnetic teeth and armature back iron. This method is used to investigate 6 topologies and to determine the optimal cost of the different topologies by using the current cost of 4 €/m for the MgB2 wire from Columbus Superconductors and also a possible future cost of 1 €/m if a superconducting offshore wind power capacity of 10 GW has been introduced by 2030 as suggested in a roadmap. The obtained topologies are compared to what is expected from a permanent magnet direct drive generators and the further development directions are discussed. Finally an experimental INNWIND.EU demonstration showing that the current commercial MgB2 wires can be wound into functional field coils for wind turbine generators is discussed.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationScientific Proceedings. EWEA Annual Conference and Exhibition 2015
    PublisherEuropean Wind Energy Association (EWEA)
    Publication date2015
    ISBN (Print)9782930670003
    Publication statusPublished - 2015
    EventEWEA Annual Conference and Exhibition 2015 - Paris, France
    Duration: 17 Nov 201520 Nov 2015


    ConferenceEWEA Annual Conference and Exhibition 2015


    • Multi-megawatt wind turbines
    • Large diameter monopile
    • Deep water
    • Ultimate design


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