News

News

Industry News | 5 Opportunities for Additive Manufacturing in the Wind Energy Industry

Date: 2019-02-11
Views: 157

Additive manufacturing (AM) technologies offer a range of advantages for the wind industry. The following examples show that implementation is possible, and even recommended, for a more market-competitive energy supplier. Once the technologies are more developed, reliable and standardized, the supplier chains will be reduced and the production could be more localized, reducing the transportation times and costs, allowing the implementation of AM in the wind industry.

In general AM can speed up part and component development time by up to 75%, reduce material resources by up to 65%, and reduce gas emissions by up to 30%. Moreover, a single part can be manufactured in one step, not requiring a secondary joining process.

Additionally, additive manufacturing can also be used in the repair of components.

Additive manufacturing applied to wind turbines
The Global Wind Energy Council has stated that the wind industry is experiencing exponential growth in recent years with the aid of the offshore wind turbines market. Thus, development and innovation through materials and manufacturing technologies are essential for the wind industry to prosper and to continue increasing their annual energy production.

A wind turbine’s blades rotate and shift with the action of the wind, making the rotor spin. The gearbox makes the connection between the low-speed shaft to the high-speed shaft, increasing the rotations per minute from 30 to 60 rpm to approximately 1000 to 1800 rpm, which an attached generator use to convert these rotations to produce electric power. The tower supports the turbine’s structure, with the nacelle containing and protecting the components on top of the tower.

AM technologies show much potential when it comes to the wind power industry, as it could enable in situ manufacture of turbine components that are designed for the unique needs of the resources of a particular location. This would, for example, decrease the shipping, transportation and handling costs and increase the rate at which new blade prototypes can be tested.

Industry News | 5 Opportunities for Additive Manufacturing in the Wind Energy Industry


The mold in figure 2 was printed as multiple sections on a Big Area Additive Manufacturing (BAAM) 3D printer at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Industry News | 5 Opportunities for Additive Manufacturing in the Wind Energy Industry


Figure 4: The produced blade section on the printed mold

Additive manufacturing of small, off-grid turbines
A project called ‘A Small Turbine to Make a Big Difference’ started by Kyle Bassett, has the goal to install small-scale plastic-based 3D printed wind turbines in remote areas with minimal access to electricity. The founder of this project started by designing a turbine capable of storing the generated energy in batteries for personal use.

Industry News | 5 Opportunities for Additive Manufacturing in the Wind Energy Industry

A scale model of the turbine was developed using a Printerbot Simple Metal 3D printer. It included the blades, hubs, rotor connectors, the frame and the blade ends, which would be the most expensive components if made through traditional manufacturing methods.

Printed nacelles
Other applications could include the creation of the nacelle. The advantages of incorporating AM into such structures are similar, e.g. economic incentives for mold production, but challenges are also encountered, such as the need to offer weather protection, passive cooling and high geometry complexity.

Industry News | 5 Opportunities for Additive Manufacturing in the Wind Energy Industry

The Additive Manufacturing Integrated Energy (AMIE) project, however, has successfully manufactured the nacelle structure.

Repair and replacement of components
Even though most of the attention is focused on the manufacture of new components, the repair of parts that need improvement or replacement due to wear should also be considered. For this application, hybrid systems incorporating processes such as Directed Energy Deposition with subtractive machining could eventually lead to the proper tolerances and design imitation of the replaced components.

Printing large-scale components
Large Scale Metal AM or Wire and Arc Additive Manufacture is an emerging technology which may facilitate the printing of large-scale parts. This even makes additive manufacturing of the nacelle and blade molds possible, as it doesn’t need a constricted operation room, allowing, as the name indicates, large-scale applications.

Additive manufactured molds
The Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO) of the US Department of Energy has started to print molds for blades with AM technologies, (figure 2). The expansion of this application in the mold industry would reduce the steps, the cost and the time for mold fabrication, as the traditional route is a process that may take several weeks to months to achieve in its totality.

Via: https://www.designworldonline.com

News / Recommended news More
2019 - 11 - 11
India’s manufacturing sector is growing to become the fifth largest in the world by 2020. Aided by the Indian government’s initiative of ‘Make in India’, the nation’s vision is to make the country a global manufacturing hub. A resource-rich nation with respect to material and skilled manpower, the country seeks indigenous innovation to create a stimulating landscape of growth.Along with the growth...
2019 - 11 - 07
Cement is used in almost all outlets of construction. From schools to roads to dams to houses, cement is the second most-consumed resource in the world. Consequently, all the cement used in the world contributes to approximately eight percent of all global carbon emissions. Moreover, cement contributes to flooding, water pollution, and soil erosion. While cement industries around the wor...
2019 - 10 - 30
In a development offering great promise for additive manufacturing, Princeton University researchers have created a method to precisely create droplets using a jet of liquid. The technique allows manufacturers to quickly generate drops of material, finely control their size and locate them within a 3D space.Although both 3D printers and traditional manufacturers already use droplets to carefully a...
2019 - 10 - 25
3D printing is finding more and more innovative applications – from printing meat in space to using giant printers to fashion entire boats – and the latest intriguing development is using the technology to help recycle more nuclear waste.Over in the US, scientists from the Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory have 3D-printed parts which will facilitate recycl...
Share:
Uniris Exhibition Shanghai Co., Ltd.
Shanghai Branch 
Tel: 4000 778 909 
E-mail:irisexpo@163.com
Guangzhou Branch
Tel:020-8327 6389
Email:pmchina@unifair.com
PM CHINA Official Website
犀牛云提供企业云服务
Scan the QR code to visit the official website by phone