The type and component certification process provides confirmation that the wind turbine type, components and systems have been designed, manufactured and tested in conformity with the requirements as mandated by international standards and site-specific conditions.
The purpose of type certification is to confirm that a wind turbine type is designed, documented and manufactured in conformity with specific standards and site conditions. In addition, type certification covers the erection procedures, installation and maintenance of the wind turbine. A type certificate denotes a fully independent assessment of the completeness, correctness and safe functioning of a wind turbine for its design lifetime. Finally, a type certificate provides the traceability for the applicable documentation for design, testing and manufacturing.
A component certificate is applicable to the major structural, mechanical and/or electrical components of the wind turbine, e.g. the frequency converter, transformer, generator, tower, rotor blade and gearbox. UL confirms that the specific component is designed, documented, manufactured and tested in conformity with the applicable design requirements, specific standards and other technical requirements. Component certification is a useful tool for component manufacturers to provide OEMs traceability to their design assumptions, testing and manufacturing processes and sites. A certified component can easily be integrated into the supply chain of OEMs.
The Type Certification Process
The purpose of the design evaluation is to evaluate the wind turbine type as designed and documented in conformity with design requirements, specific standards and other technical requirements including:
- Load assumptions
- Safety systems
- Rotor blades
- Mechanical and structural components
- Electrical systems
The manufacturing evaluation is to ensure that a specific wind turbine type and its components are manufactured in conformity with the certified design. It is also a useful tool to provide traceability between designer, supplier and manufacturing sites. Evaluation includes:
- Components, including gear boxes, generators, nacelles, towers, rotor blades, etc.
- Substructure and foundation
Type Testing Evaluation
The purpose of the type testing evaluation is to verify such variables as wind turbine function, safety, structural integrity, power performance, power quality, and acoustic noise emission characteristics. Services include:
- Mechanical load measurements
- Power performance measurements
- Safety and function test
- Power quality measurements
- Low voltage ride through (LVRT) test
- Acoustic noise measurements
- Static and dynamic blade test
- Gearbox field test
- Converter and generator type test
Final Evaluation and Certificate
UL issues a specific type/component certificate once the certification process is complete and the final evaluation is satisfactory.
Other supported certification schemes and requirements:
- US: UL 6141 (large WT), UL 6142 (small WT)
- Japan: JSWTA0001 (small WT)
- UK: IEC 61400-2, MCS (small WT)
- German type approval (DiBT)
- Korean type approval (KEA Scheme)