Science & Technology

Larger and Better Blades for Wind Turbines – Holizon Magazine Blog

Europe is full of wind and makes good use of it.Wind energy Maximum contribution To EU renewable energy targets.

This will be an important element of climate-neutral Europe, a goal the EU wants to achieve by 2050. Homemade technologies and tools will help Europe reach its climate goals while at the same time strengthening the competitiveness of the EU’s wind ecosystem on the world stage. Create a new green job.

Wind of change

In 2020, wind energy will be about 16% of European electricity demandBoth floating and fixed, including most onshore installations and some offshore installations.

Europe predicts that it will increase its total wind power generation by about 50% over the next five years and plans to significantly increase its ante. Improved power performance is achieved not only with more equipment, but also with wind turbines that can generate more power than their predecessors and have less outsourcing for maintenance and repair.

Wind turbines are huge, fast (given size and weight) and exposed to extremely harsh working conditions. Imagine a soccer field spinning in the air. 15 to 20 revolutions per minute In some of the most gusty places on earth.

From 2000 to 2018, the average length of wind turbine blades more than doubled. The new model is expected to reach a length of over 85 meters by 2025. Some offshore turbines have the potential to sweep the sky with 110 meter long blades (rotating diameters of two soccer pitches) in the near future.

The larger the blade, the faster the tip moves and the greater the erosion of the front edge. The industry has made tremendous technological advances in materials, design and manufacturing. Still, installing larger blades that provide more power with less wear is a tremendous challenge.

Fortunately, the EU has improved resilience to degradation (increased with larger blades and more extreme weather) and improved non-destructive monitoring for early detection of defects, even during production. There are plans to include.

“Give” armor coat

The blades are manufactured in a multi-layered “armor coat” to withstand the forces of nature and the enormous forces generated by the rotation itself. Normally, the outer layer can be eroded during the operation and the inner layer can peel off.

According to Asta Šakalytė R & D director at Aerox Advanced Polymers, SL, turbine life is theoretically 25 years, but today’s medium-sized systems typically require extensive maintenance of about 10 years due to blade deterioration. is. Newer ones with larger turning radii show severe erosion by the second year of use.

Aerox has developed to address this issue Arolep®, a pioneering and unique state-of-the-art protection system LEP4BLADES business.

Unlike traditional coatings found on pipes, Aerox coatings are viscoelastic. In other words, when stress is applied, it deforms and bounces off. As explained by Šakalytė, this is achieved by the combination of two polymers with different complementary properties. The AROLEP® coating can absorb the high and high frequency impacts caused by raindrops and other particles hitting the leading edge of the blade. By customizing and modifying the polymer properties, the coating and blade material work together to disperse the impact of impact throughout the blade structure.

Independent performance testing has shown that AROLEP® protects blade integrity better than other available solutions and can be used not only for new blades, but also for blades that are already in use.

Market entry should have a significant spillover effect on consumers. Significant savings in maintenance, repairs and downtime can reduce energy costs. Meanwhile, Aerox continues to improve its formulation while targeting new coatings and adhesives for future blades that could help make wind turbine manufacturing a zero-waste business.

And the angels watching over them

The coating is designed to minimize damage, but it cannot be completely prevented. Improved structural health monitoring technology can detect defects early before the scale tilts, and repair or replacement can cause economic and practical problems as great as the turbine itself.

Blade failure is an important issue for the wind turbine industry.about One-third of billions of euros a year Heading to wind turbine operation and maintenance (O & M) is for inspection and / or repair of blade coatings.

Until now, it has not been possible to identify internal defects in the blade coating. Visual inspection is the method of choice during manufacturing and maintenance, but it misses any imperfections beneath the surface.

When it comes to coating wind turbine blades, even technically advanced inspection methods such as induction and ultrasonic techniques are inadequate. They require contact that can damage the blade and coating, especially when wet, individual layers cannot be analyzed, only the overall thickness is analyzed.

One way to look inside the multilayer coating could be in the terahertz (THz) region of the electromagnetic spectrum between microwave and infrared frequencies. It can “see” things and identify what is inside, and their chemical composition and electrical properties in non-destructive, non-invasive, non-ionizing ways.

Until decades ago, it was difficult to unlock the potential because waves could not be generated and detected efficiently. However, it is now specially developed for industrial use by das-Nano, Not us business.

According to das-Nano CEO and NOTUS Coordinator Eduardo Azanza, “NOTUS is the first non-contact tool for non-destructive material inspection specifically designed for wind turbine inspection. Coating structures, regardless of material. And detailed characterization of individual layers of blades can be performed to quantify adhesion between layers.

NOTUS is available in three versions for blade lifecycle applications: development, manufacturing, operations, and even inspection by acceptors and insurance companies. Based on Azanza’s estimates, wind farm operators can save about 10% on O & M costs.

And wind farms aren’t the only ones to benefit. NOTUS works with all types of multilayer boards, including metals, composites and plastics. Suitable for flat and curved surfaces, dry, wet and hardened paints.

THz technology also enables the electrical characterization of advanced materials such as graphene, 2D materials, thin films and bulk materials.

Azanza said: ‘das-Nano has introduced NOTUS, a fast, non-destructive and harmless technology to the market. test Identifies defective parts as early as possible in all products on the production line.

The research in this article was funded by the EU. If you like this article, consider sharing it on social media.

Larger and Better Blades for Wind Turbines – Holizon Magazine Blog Larger and Better Blades for Wind Turbines – Holizon Magazine Blog

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