Photo: Colourbox

DTU's President: "We are ready to develop the largest wind turbines"

Monday 30 Apr 18
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Anders Overgaard Bjarklev
President
+45 45 25 10 00
DTU welcomes the Danish Government’s energy initiative.

In line with the energy initiative launched by the Danish government on 26 April, a new large offshore wind farm will contribute to the objective of deriving at least 50 per cent of Denmark’s energy needs from renewable energy by 2030. This is a signal that we need to step up the pace of research into and development of optimal solutions in the coming years.

We cannot provide more wind, but we can make better use of it. Accordingly, we must extend our reach to pursue the smallest of tiniest gains.

In very simple terms, optimizing wind turbine blades can provide 3 per cent higher yields; new composite materials perhaps 2 per cent; better gearboxes 0.75 per cent, and optimized positioning at sea perhaps 3.75 per cent.

If we are able to maximize all these optimization parameters for the future wind farm and create a 10 per cent increase in production, that is equivalent to 80 MW, or the total electricity consumption of a town with a population of 77,000.

High-tech research and infrastructure will be needed as research into wind energy and technology becomes more advanced, with a stronger focus on the details, in tandem with the growth in size of wind turbines. Breakthroughs in research are increasingly dependent on researchers’ access to advanced equipment, databases, facilities, experimental facilities and tools—i.e. research infrastructure. In recent years, DTU has geared up to be at the forefront of developments.

Correct wind turbine positioning also is vital for harnessing sea winds optimally—not only as regards wind currents, but also in relation to other wind turbines and the mainland. Very precise estimates can be made using the DTU-developed software Global Wind Atlas.

 Testing is also required for the large wind turbines that will now be produced in larger quantities and put up at sea. Such testing is best performed on land, and DTU has highly suitable test facilities in Høvsøre and Østerild. We are awaiting approval of additional test sites for wind turbines of up to 330 metres tall. Using the national wind tunnel, we can also test the strength and flexibility of large-scale rotor blades and wind impact at more than three times hurricane force.

DTU welcomes the new energy initiative and looks forward to exciting years ahead with a view to keeping Denmark in the lead.


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