New Industry Project Fights Blade Leading Edge Erosion

  • Operations & Maintenance

A major new collaborative project has been launched between ORE Catapult, wind farm owner/operators, wind turbine manufacturers, and academics at world-leading research institutes. 

The Blade Leading Edge Erosion Programme (BLEEP) will coordinate industry wide initiatives to reduce the adverse impact of blade leading edge erosion on the operational performance of offshore wind turbines.

The programme will assess the impact on aerodynamic performance and structural integrity, with the objective of minimising operation and maintenance activities whilst maximising reliability and availability, thereby cutting the cost of electricity generated from offshore wind.

The programme will seek to quantify the magnitude of leading edge erosion (LEE) across the sector by investigating its effect on wind turbine blade efficiency and structural integrity. In addition, by investigating the fundamental physics underpinning LEE failure by experimental and computational methods, ORE Catapult intends to apply that knowledge to:

  • Improve and de-risk techniques for LEE protection
  • Improve and de-risk techniques for LEE repair
  • Develop an independent UK-based facility for erosion testing to assess the performance of current solutions (materials, coatings, etc) and standardise the evaluation of new erosion protection and repair technologies

The programme steering committee will promote collaboration and “joined-up-thinking” to ensure the programme objectives are representative of industry needs. Organisations from across the stakeholder community have been asked to nominate representatives to participate in the committee.

Press release; Image: ORE Catapult

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