100MW of Alternative Power Conversion
An electric synchronous generator at a conventional (thermal or hydro) utility plant produces in excess of 100 megawatt (MW) of power on a continuous basis. Modern alternative energy facilities - Solar and Wind - are still limited to single digit MWs per conversion system. The bottlenecks to expansions in capacity are the methods of collection and inversion being utilized.
Technology available on the market today simply does not scale up to real utility levels. Alencon systems are the first inverter systems, constructed from compact Inverter modules operating in concert, that are scalable from 4 to 100MW. These systems, based on a patent pending technology, offer unprecedented reliability, 99% efficiency†, and robustness similar to electro-mechanical generators.
The application of an Alencon system in a solar array includes an energy harvesting sub-system that optimizes power collection from each string of PV modules. Voltage at elevated levels reduces DC conduction losses, cuts material costs due to lower conductor requirements, and decreases labor expenses significantly. Several Grid Inverter Packages (GrIPs™) are collectively responsible for power conversion, and thus provide sufficient redundancy to allow generation at full capacity even with individual inverter modules disconnected.
For wind, on- or off-shore, Alencon inverters may be used to convert DC to AC from a single direct drive turbine or a cluster of turbines. The latter makes it possible to connect an entire farm to a single high voltage land-based Alencon inverter system.
Fuel cell power plants can be expanded significantly without the need to patch several independent inverters together. Alencon systems can convert DC to AC from a single FC generator or from a group of generators connected to a single system.
Input to a single inverter system can be a combination of any number of DC sources, meaning that the predictability of a Fuel Cell plant can be combined with fuel-less, intermittent generators such as Wind and PV.
Alencon systems incorporate a virtual reality supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) subsystem. An immersive virtual environment gives operators the ability to oversee and control their systems from anywhere in the world. While a clear overview gives general information about the health and output of a plant, closing in on any individual component gives a wealth of information on its operation.