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Wind Turbine Reliability Data Review and Impacts on Levelised Cost of Energy

Dao, Cuong D.; Kazemtabrizi, Behzad; Crabtree, Christopher J.

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Cuong D. Dao


Reliability is critical to the design, operation, maintenance, and performance assessment and improvement of wind turbines (WTs). This paper systematically reviews publicly available reliability data for both onshore and offshore WTs and investigates the impacts of reliability on the cost of energy. WT failure rates and downtimes, broken down by subassembly, are collated from 18 publicly available databases including over 18 000 WTs, corresponding to over 90 000 turbine‐years. The data are classified based on the types of data collected (failure rate and stop rate) and by onshore and offshore populations. A comprehensive analysis is performed to investigate WT subassembly reliability data variations, identify critical subassemblies, compare onshore and offshore WT reliability, and understand possible sources of uncertainty. Large variations in both failure rates and downtimes are observed, and the skew in failure rate distribution implies that large databases with low failure rates, despite their diverse populations, are less uncertain than more targeted surveys, which are easily skewed by WT type failures. A model is presented to evaluate the levelised cost of energy as a function of WT failure rates and downtimes. A numerical study proves a strong and nonlinear relationship between WT reliability and operation and maintenance expenditure as well as annual energy production. Together with the cost analysis model, the findings can help WT operators identify the optimal degree of reliability improvement to minimise the levelised cost of energy.


Dao, C. D., Kazemtabrizi, B., & Crabtree, C. J. (2019). Wind Turbine Reliability Data Review and Impacts on Levelised Cost of Energy. Wind Energy, 22(12), 1848-1871.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jul 22, 2019
Online Publication Date Sep 10, 2019
Publication Date Dec 31, 2019
Deposit Date Jul 22, 2019
Publicly Available Date Sep 11, 2019
Journal Wind Energy
Print ISSN 1095-4244
Electronic ISSN 1099-1824
Publisher Wiley Open Access
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 22
Issue 12
Pages 1848-1871
Keywords Reliability, wind turbine, failure rate, downtime, uncertainty, levelised cost of energy.


Published Journal Article (Advance online version) (2.9 Mb)

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Copyright Statement
Advance online version This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. © 2019 The Authors. Wind Energy Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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