Yesterday, Wind Empowerment members, INTI (National Industrial Technological Institute), who are based in Argentina participated virtually in SWAT’s (Small Wind Association of Testers’) 4th Annual Conference, which was taking place at NREL/NWTC in Louisville, Colorado in the USA.
Juan Pablo Duzdevich began by introducing the latest developments in INTI’s small wind market assistance programme in Argentina. In order to improve the links between SWT manufacturers and consumers, INTI will soon launch their new small wind sectoral communication platform, www.aerogenerar.com.ar. In order to improve the quality of SWT installations, they have recently completed a SWT installation guide and in collaboration with INTI’s certification branch, will soon be launching a SWT installers skills certification program.
INTI have also recently added acoustic testing to the capabilities of their small wind test site in Cultural-Co, Neuquen. Mariano Amadio shared their first test results, showing the surprisingly high noise caused by even just small defects in the blade tip.
Andres Zappa explained that their recent attempt to begin offering standardised SWT safety testing left them with more questions than answers, calling for the use of standard engineering methodologies such as fault trees and Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA) in order to present a more structured analysis. Drawing in risk management techniques from the oil industry, Andres proposed a risk classification methodology that encompassed both probability and consequence, adding in the additional dimension of three different applications: urban, rural dwelling and isolated. He argued that although the probabilities of each risk are the same in each case, the consequence is very different.