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Developing quality wind blades revolves around automation

by Siemens Dreamer Siemens Dreamer on ‎07-24-2012 12:00 PM

If you ask wind turbine blade manufacturers what they are most concerned about, without hesitation they will answer “quality” and “time to market.” In fact, the vast majority of companies are firmly focused on producing higher quality blades up to two times faster than they do now. That's a tall order.

As a company that is deeply involved in renewable energy as well as industrial manufacturing, Siemens AG and its business unit, Siemens PLM Software, are uniquely suited to support the growing market demand for fast-paced development of larger, lighter and more durable wind turbine blades. As the industry is moving from the early days of trial-and-error product development to a more automated, sophisticated technological approach, PLM software is playing a central role in enabling the development of the newest generation of blades.

Just as critical to that effort is the development of specialized engineering software for the design and manufacture of large and complex composite products, such as wind blades. The light weight, durable nature of composite materials is well suited to engineer superior blades that can cope with 20 years or more of high rotating speed vibrations, lighting, bird strikes, gusting winds, freezing snow, driving rain, brutal heat and every other imaginable kind of weather. However, only with the recent advent of tools that enable the precise design, simulation and manufacture of composites, are firms finally able to reliably and predictably produce wind turbine blades that they can be confident will stand the test of time.

To learn how these tools are enabling leading wind energy firms to develop durable, high performance composite blades, please read an article by Dr. Olivier Guillermin and Dr. S. Ravi Shankar of Siemens PLM Software that recently appeared in Wind Systems Magazine entitled, Automating Wind Blade Development From Root to Tip.