IES Seminar Series - Kevin Kails


Hudson Beare Building, Classroom 4


Friday, April 13, 2018 - 13:00 to 14:00

Presenter: Kevin Kails

Title: Superconducting generators for large direct-drive wind turbines


One of the biggest challenges the wind energy sector faces is to reduce the cost of energy. For several decades now there has been a trend towards higher power-rated wind turbines which help reduce the cost of energy through lower installation and maintenance costs per kilo-watt hour. However, one critical issue with large wind turbines is the tower head mass problem. The tower head becomes extremely heavy for large wind turbines, this leads to a need for more robust foundation towers for support which in turn dramatically increase the cost of the whole system. To solve this issue a novel lighter topology of power generators based on superconductor technology is required which would enable 10 MW and even higher rated wind turbines. The focus of this talk will be on the double claw pole machine and the measures that were taken to further increase its power density through new design approaches.


Kevn Kails graduated from the University of Edinburgh in 2016 with an MEng in Electrical Engineering with Renewable Energy. His final year project was in regards to superconducting synchronous machines and their potential power density under the supervision of Dr Quan Li.

After graduating he proceeded to undertake a PhD at the University of Edinburgh also under the supervision of Dr Quan Li. The PhD topic is on applying high-temperature superconductors to large direct drive wind turbine generators in order to increase their power density and hence reduce their mass. He is currently in his second year of his PhD.

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