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BLAEST is testing Vestas’ XXL Wind Turbine Blade

BLAEST is testing Vestas’ XXL Wind Turbine Blade

The record long 115.5 m blade for Vestas’ V236-15.0 MW™ wind turbine is being tested at Blaest’s blade test facility in Aalborg, Denmark.

The test campaign, which is scheduled to take about one year, comprises extreme loading as well as fatigue testing to validate the design and manufacturing quality, and the blade’s ability to withstand decades of 24/7 operation in harsh offshore environments. Blaest’s test facility with 3 state-of-the-art advanced test rigs allows for a safe and efficient performing of the test campaign. Time to market is an important factor in a development project like this, and therefore it is key that tests are performed safely and correctly according to the test standards in the shortest possible time frame.

Alistair Tillman, Director of Test and Verification at Vestas, explains the reason for choosing Blaest to test the record breaking blade: ”Vestas has been partnering with Blaest to test blades since 2016. Therefore, it was a natural choice to go to them for this campaign. When choosing a partner for such a significant test programme, it is important that there is trust as well as them having the necessary competences and equipment to execute and keep to the agreed milestones. Blaest have all 3 of these essential ingredients”.

Blaest’s Managing Director, Erik Steen Jensen follows: “Meeting the needs of the market and our customers is a key driver for our strategic focus. Many times before, our customers have selected Blaest to test their new blades – by then being the world’s largest. It is always a challenge to do something that nobody did before, but I am confident we will succeed. Preparations have been ongoing for about one year and we have the personnel, equipment and test methods ready for this mega blade”.

The first critical test has now been successfully completed. It is a static test where the blade is subjected to extreme loads replicating operational worst-case scenarios on the wind turbine, such as extreme wind conditions combined with various faults in the turbine control and safety systems. The load applied to the blade is equal to the weight of 20 African elephants standing in a row on top of the blade.

Blaest is jointly owned by Danish Technical University DTU, FORCE Technology and Det Norske Veritas, DNV. Opposite to its competitors in Europe and abroad Blaest is operated on purely commercial basis without any public funding.