Wind power competition

Wednesday, 15 April, 2009

The Department of Electrical and Computer Systems Engineering at Monash University is this year hosting the student competition project Wind Turbine Power Maximiser.

The International Future Challenge, of which this competition is a part, is a bi-annual event run by the IEEE Power Electronics Society and the US-based Power Sources Manufacturers Association to promote the design and practical construction of electrical energy technologies.

Twelve teams from around the world are working on power electronic converters, wind and power engineering to compete and will come to Melbourne in July where the finals will be judged at Monash.

The three days of finals, from 15 to 17 July, will be the culmination of 18 months of teams working to design and build an electronic circuit to maximise the power from a wind turbine.

For any particular wind speed, a turbine can only extract the maximum power from the wind if it is rotating at the correct speed.

These circuits will endeavour to control the speed of the turbine and to convert the generator output to the right voltage to charge the battery. The battery also needs to be protected against overcharging and the turbine has to be protected against too-high speeds and voltages.

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