The WALiD project faces several challenges which will need to be solved if a new holistic concept for wind turbine blades is to be realised.
Partners need to combine material, process and design novelties which have to be well matched and they are able to meet these challenges by being part of a multidisciplinary team using a well balanced approach.
The new technologies, such as automated fibre placement with thermoplastic tapes are supported by simulation models and new design geometries for blades. Furthermore, different technology combinations for the manufacturing of sandwich materials are currently being investigated and in parallel to this new demonstrator geometries and samples are being studied.
Fraunhofer ICT attended the 24th FAKUMA International trade fair for plastics processing held in Friedrichshafen in Germany on 13th to 17th October 2015.
The fair which attracted around 1,780 exhibitors from 38 countries offered a comprehensive overview of all plastics technologies and those involved in injection moulding, extrusion technology and thermoforming were able to access information about processes, machines and tools applicable to the plastics industry. The focus of the event was on thermoplastic processing with a high proportion of injection moulding related topics (mainly machine manufacturers, material suppliers and end-users).
Fraunhofer ICT demonstrated the sandwich material via a wind turbine model which had been built specifically for this purpose. In addition, the tape and foam material was disseminated and project flyers were handed out.
Smithers Rapra and Smithers Pira opened its doors on 29th October for an Open Day on ‘Innovation in Plastics and Rubber’.
The event was a great success with around 35 people attending from a range of industries.
During the day a number of briefings took place. These covered subjects such as: ‘Innovation through collaboration’, ‘Benefits of an innovation partnership’ and ‘Future trends in plastic innovation’ and details of the WALiD project were included in a presentation used for one of these briefings.
A tour of the various laboratories at Smithers Rapra and Smithers Pira took place and delegates were also given the opportunity to network with other attendees and Smithers Rapra personnel over lunch.
A selection of WALiD dissemination material was on display which included a pull up banner, posters, leaflets, postcards and press packs containing a range of material were handed out to delegates on departure. The project video was also available to watch on a digital TV screen.