The high reliability of wind turbine blades is especially important for large and extra large wind turbines. It can be ensured by the development of strong and highly damage resistant advanced materials. The Materials Research Division at Risø DTU has received a grant from the Danish Council for Strategic Research to develop the scientific basis and computational tools for the microstructural optimization of materials for wind blades.

In a newly approved project, the scientific basis for the development of advanced, strong composites for wind blades, by optimizing their structures at microlevel, is to be created. This will be achieved by carrying out a comprehensive materials testing programme, and through the development of a “virtual laboratory” for the computational testing of different materials for wind blade applications. Different ways of modification and optimization of wind blade materials microstructures (including nanoengineered composites and hierarchical materials) will be explored in numerical experiments.

Exact methods to predict the lifetime and strength of different blade materials under complex cyclic and environmental loading, as well as recommendations towards the improvement of performances of composites for wind turbine blades will be developed.

The new project includes the collaboration with the China University of Mining and Technology, Beijing. Risø DTU has a good experience of collaboration with the China University of Mining and Technology, Beijing. Several students from CUMTB have been visiting Risø during the last years supported by scholarships from Chinese Academy of Sciences. One of the previous joint projects was the project “3D virtual testing of composites for wind energy applications: Computational mesomechanics approach” supported by the Danish Agency for Science, Technology and Innovation, and Danida.

As a result of this collaboration, a number of papers have been published in leading international journals.

Source : RISO

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