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Demonstration of a disruptive rotor blade concept for large wind turbines

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - TRIBLADE (Demonstration of a disruptive rotor blade concept for large wind turbines)

Reporting period: 2018-10-01 to 2020-05-31

The top priority for the wind power industry is to reduce total Cost of Energy (CoE). One of the components that influence CoE the most are the wind turbine rotor blades. They use a lot of expensive material, they are mainly produced by hand, they are made in one piece, and they are often long. Both production and shipping are challenging and come at high cost.
Winfoor together with Marstrom Composite has a solution. It is called Triblade and it is a disruptive technology for large scale wind turbine rotor blades. The unique technology is a 3-in-1-blade that lowers the costs for rotor blades dramatically. It makes shipping easy and efficient. Blades become lighter, they can be made in modules and the production process can be automated to a level that is not possible to reach with conventional blades. Looking ahead, Triblade can also spearhead the development of next generation larger and more powerful wind turbines, by allowing for longer blades than today.
It is a game changing technology that will
• lower the CoE and thereby making it more attractive as an energy source
• accelerate the transition to greater use of wind power worldwide.

Therefore, leveraging on the opportunity provided by the SME Instrument, Winfoor together with Marstrom Composite, aims to introduce Triblade to the wind energy market.
During the project we have made significant advances on the Triblade technology and its business. In more detail, a lightning protection system has been adapted for Triblade, the certification process has been initiated, the core technology task has been completed, we have raised the awareness of the project, the aerodynamic and aeroelastic properties have been studied and optimized for, the IPR situation has been improved, and the low-cost production and shipping process is under development. The technology has been demonstrated under real conditions through a 22m diameter Triblade rotor mounted on a wind turbine. The tests show good results and demonstrate the validity of the Triblade technology under real conditions and during a longer period of time.
The results and feedback from tests and demonstrations will be used to perform adjustments and calibration of both manufacturing process and product specifications in order to match end-user (i.e. OEMs and wind farm developers) needs and requirements. The demonstration and documentation of the claimed advantages and benefits as well as the certification will provide the basis for wide and fast deployment by clearly demonstrating to the end-users and other stakeholders the benefits associated with Triblade adoption.
The accomplishment of the project objectives will represent a significant business opportunity for Winfoor and Marstrom Composite, with expected accumulated sales revenue of €84.8M and profits of €39.8M and create at least 73 new direct jobs, 6 years after the commercialization.