Adwen’s Giant Blade Put to Test at ORE Catapult

Image: ORE Catapult

The 88m blade designed and produced for Adwen’s 8MW offshore wind turbine has arrived to ORE Catapult’s blade test facilities at Blyth, where it will undergo a series of static and fatigue tests as part of a European-funded project.

Raul Prieto, Blades Knowledge Area Lead for ORE Catapult, said: “The 88 metre Adwen blade that arrived at ORE Catapult’s Blyth facility will undergo testing as part of the XL-Blade project. This EU Demowind-funded project aims to reduce the cost of offshore wind by designing, validating and deploying the world’s largest offshore wind turbine blade.

“ORE Catapult will undertake static and fatigue structural testing of the blade in our world-leading 100m test facility, ensuring that the correct loads are applied to the blade during testing and that these loads are sufficiently representative of the loads to be seen in service. The test outcomes will be used to validate the structural design of the blade.”

The blade is the first unit of the MAKE blade Adwen has designed and produced for the AD 8-180.

The offshore wind turbine manufacturer has a MAKE&BUY sourcing strategy for some key components such as the blades. That means the company has the flexibility to choose for each project whether to produce its own blades or source them from a third party. This decision is made by taking into account different aspects such as costs, economics for each project, local content rules, capacity utilization of the factories, etc.

The blade design has been conceived with scalability in mind to enable further development of Adwen’s 8 MW platform, according to the company, which unveiled the first manufactured 88.4m blade together with LM Wind Power last year.

The blade length is the best compromise between swept area, energy production, and the weight as well as the loads transferred to the wind turbine – a combination that provides the optimum balance of plant costs and contributes to lowering Levelized Cost of Energy (LCoE) in the industry, according to Adwen.

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