Posters - WindEurope Annual Event 2024

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Come meet the poster presenters to ask them questions and discuss their work

We would like to invite you to come and see the posters at our upcoming conference. The posters will showcase a diverse range of research topics, and will give delegates an opportunity to engage with the authors and learn more about their work. Whether you are a seasoned researcher or simply curious about the latest developments in your field, we believe that the posters will offer something of interest to everyone. So please join us at the conference and take advantage of this opportunity to learn and engage with your peers in the academic community. We look forward to seeing you there!

PO240: Advancing Wind Blade Manufacturing through Innovative Polyurethane (PU) Resin Systems: A Study on Manufacturing Efficiency and Impact on Durability

Jens van Haag, Market Development Manager, Covestro


An advanced portfolio of polyurethane (PU) solutions tailored for various applications within the wind energy sector has been developed. These PU resin systems, optimized for vacuum infusion in wind blade production, usher in a new era of opportunities, spanning onshore and offshore wind energy. These innovations encompass enhanced blade design, streamlined manufacturing processes, improved energy generation, and eco-friendly recycling practices. Over a recent period, around 1,500 wind blades utilizing this PU resin have been manufactured. This achievement has the potential to yield a substantial 3 billion kW·h of renewable energy, contributing to a reduction of approximately 2.4 million tons of CO2 emissions compared to coal-based electricity generation. These accomplishments earned the authors' organization the JEC innovation award. The focus of the research has been to attain both superior mechanical properties and operational efficiency in wind blade manufacturing. The investigated PU resin system merges low viscosity with high reactivity, enabling faster infusion and curing processes. Additionally, the low exothermic heat of PU lowers the risk of issues stemming from internal stresses. This study evaluates the mechanical properties and robustness of PU wind blade components, particularly in relation to shortened filling and curing cycles. A representative thick blade component demonstrator is manufactured using the vacuum infusion process and analyzed for temperature distribution over time. The findings demonstrate that PU's low exothermic heat allows for expedited curing cycles without compromising structural integrity. The research examines the long-term properties affected by accelerated curing processes. It is established that accelerated curing has an acceptable impact on the fatigue behavior of PU composites, ensuring their reliability over extended periods. In conclusion, the integration of PU into wind blade composites shows potential for shortened manufacturing cycles, heightened durability, and extended larger blade designs. These advantages collectively contribute to an accelerated scale-up of new wind capacity manufacturing.

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