The company downplayed the severity of the occurrence, which was recorded less than six months after the fall of another turbine in a park in Maranhão
São Paulo BRAZIL - A wind farm operated by the Omega Geração electric company in Piauí had one of its turbines damaged on Sunday, when parts of the machine plummeted from a height of almost 100 meters.
The incident left no injuries, but it called for a halt to the operation of the wind turbine, made by Spain's Gamesa, Omega said in a statement on Monday, after questions from Reuters.
Images circulated on social media show that the turbine tower remained in place, while parts of the equipment, such as shovels and the rotor, fell and shattered to the ground.
"This Sunday afternoon, some parts were disconnected from one of our generators in the municipality of Ilha Grande, in Piauí," said Omega in a note, adding that he hopes to resume the operation of the wind turbine "as soon as possible", but without mentioning deadlines .
Siemens Gamesa, a company resulting from the merger of Gamesa's wind energy business with that of German Siemens, said that a “safety zone” was established around the equipment and that the causes of the problem are being investigated.
“The wind farm is under a Siemens Gamesa operation and maintenance service contract. A full investigation is underway to determine the cause of this incident, ”the company said in a statement to Reuters.
Omega also downplayed the severity of the occurrence, which was recorded less than six months after the fall of a wind turbine manufactured by the North American GE at one of the generator's parks in Maranhão, last September.
"There was no major damage to the equipment and its structure," said the electrician about the case registered this week in Piauí, without going into details.
The machines at the Omega complex in Piauí, 90 meters high, have been operational since 2014.
Omega had recorded in September of last year the fall of a wind turbine in the Delta 6 park, which injured an employee who was at the site at the time.
Equipment falls like the one seen at the Omega park on Sunday are unusual for the wind industry, two industry sources told Reuters, who commented anonymously on the case when analyzing images of the damaged machine.
The case should not require the replacement of the entire wind turbine, but the speed of repairs will depend mainly on the availability of equipment by the manufacturer, one of the sources told Reuters, when listing the visible damage to the turbine.
"The rotor and the shaft, which is formed by the hub and the blades, fell ... it is not normal to drop a rotor like this, it is not a trivial accident," said the source.
Despite the incident, the tower that supported the turbine appears to have suffered no damage, while the "nacelle", a kind of box where the generator and other devices are located, may also have remained intact or suffered internal damage, a second source said.
“The nacelle is on top of the tower. The tower stood, apparently undamaged. The nacelle may have internal damage. Hub and shovels on the floor, ”said the second source.
"It is possible that the set (of the parts) has fallen completely ... but it may also be that a component has fallen and generated an aerodynamic problem, leading to the fall of the structure", he added.
The Delta complex, to which the crashed turbine belongs, has a total installed capacity of 70 megawatts. Each machine has 2 megawatts in capacity.
Translation from Portuguese to English using Google Translate