Spain-based wind turbine manufacturer, Siemens Gamesa Renewables Energy (SGRE) has introduced the world’s first commercially available recyclable turbine blade.
Developed at SGRE’s facility in Aalborg, Denmark, the 81-meter long blade uses an advanced resin material to bind the component material. Moreover, after decommissioning a wind turbine blade, the entity uses a mild acid solution to remove the resin from the materials.
According to an official statement by the company, the use of mild acid solution helps protect the essential properties of the materials in the blade, as opposed to the other present ways of recycling the traditional wind turbine blades. The component material can later be reused in new ways after being separated.
As per reports, three large companies have already placed an order for the novel recyclable turbine blade. Both WPD and EDF Renewables have expressed their plans to deploy the blades in their future project orders.
Similarly, Germany-based energy firm- RWE will install a trial batch of the turbines at the Kaskasi offshore wind project, with its first generation slated to take place in 2022.
It is worth mentioning that manufacturing process of most wind turbines makes it difficult for recycling profitably.
The turbine blade production process includes fitting the materials in a way that makes them difficult to be separated after use. Additionally, the relatively low cost of new materials may eventually make blades end up as waste.
Earlier, Siemens Gamesa Renewables Energy had conveyed its plans of making turbine blades fully recyclable by the end of 2040. Gregorio Acero, Head of Quality Management at SGRE, mentioned that the company is well ahead of the timeline.
In August’21, Siemens Gamesa announced the expansion of its offshore blade facility in Hull, England by approximately 41,600 sq. meters., doubling the size of its manufacturing units. With an investment of USD 256 million, the factory is expected to be completed by the end of 2023.