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Record-breaking 107m blade gets green light

Posted on 11 Nov 2020 and read 398 times
Record-breaking 107m blade gets green lightLM Wind Power’s record-breaking 107m blade for the GE Renewable Energy’s Haliade-X platform has received its Component Certificate from the TÜV Nord certifying body.

The component certification hinged on the testing of two 107m blades produced at the company’s factory in Cherbourg. One blade completed its testing at the WTTC test facility in Boston, USA in September, while the other the other underwent a full-scale test (including static test, fatigue test and post-fatigue test) at the UK’s Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) ORE Catapult’s facility in Blyth.

The final pull of the post-fatigue test took place in mid-October and less than two weeks later, the blade Component Certificate was secured.

Hanif Mashal, LM Wind Power vice-president engineering, said: "Validating a blade and composite structure with the size and complexity of the Haliade-X LM 107.0 P is a technological milestone never seen or tried before.”

"One of the biggest things learned from the test campaign has been the use of lean operational practices, specifically during the last six months of testing, which helped us, and our partner ORE Catapult, achieve the needed milestone of certification.”.

Ground-breaking achievement

Tony Quinn, test and validation director at ORE Catapult, said: “The testing programme undertaken on the LM 107m blade has been the most intensive and rigorous that we have undertaken, applying extreme loads under laboratory conditions 50% greater than ever previously applied in a blade test.

"To achieve full certification of the longest blade in the world is a ground-breaking achievement and testament to an unparalleled programme of collaboration between LM, GE Renewable Energy and ORE Catapult under the most challenging of global circumstances".

Cornelis van Beveren, blade test systems lead engineer at LM Wind Power, said: “It all started with the largest blade in the world not fitting any test facility. Even in the largest test centres at ORE Catapult, the blade tip had to be cut off to enable the test facility door to close. Our experienced test and validation centre technicians joined with the ORE Catapult team to ensure fast progress and sharing of blade test experience."

He concluded: The travel restrictions made it impossible for us to join the final static tests in person. Prior knowledge of the facility let me fully understand the process and I was able to guide the test team and monitor the tests by a live stream.”