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Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Alternative energies: Weak points in the concrete: wind turbine completely blown up

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Jane Stock is a technology author, who has written for 24 Hours World. She writes about the latest in technology news and trends, and is always on the lookout for new and innovative ways to improve his audience’s experience.
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Just over a year ago, a brand new giant wind turbine collapsed in Haltern – due to concrete damage. The manufacturer then stopped 18 other systems. One of them has now been blown up in the Rhineland.

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A new wind turbine with a hub height of 164 meters has been blown up in Jüchen, North Rhine-Westphalia, due to serious damage to the concrete tower.

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It became necessary to blow up the complete system with rotor blades and nacelle after gradual dismantling was not possible for safety reasons. The system was part of the Jüchen A44n wind farm. The other five facilities in the park will also be dismantled for safety reasons. After dismantling the main components and the steel upper part of the tower, the lower concrete part of them is also to be blasted.

The wind farm’s wind turbines have been idle for months for safety reasons after an identical wind turbine collapsed in Haltern in the Ruhr area last autumn. The wind turbine was completely destroyed. Damage to the tower of one of the six systems was also found in Jüchen. The systems in Jüchen had not yet been handed over to the three operators at the time of decommissioning. This was actually planned for the end of 2021.

Plants are among the largest wind turbines in Germany

After the dismantling in the coming year, six new systems with a total output of 27 megawatts are to be built on the wind farm site, as announced by the Hamburg-based wind turbine manufacturer Nordex and the future operators – RWE, the city of Jüchen and the energy supplier New. They are to produce green electricity for 26,000 households. The wind farm is located on a recultivated area of ​​the Garzweiler opencast lignite mine. For the blast on Sunday morning, Autobahn 44 was completely closed in both directions.

The systems are among the largest onshore wind turbines in Germany. They have a hub height of 164 meters, the rotor blades reach a height of up to 239 meters. For comparison: the towers of Cologne Cathedral are around 157 meters high.

Nordex announced in September that weak points in the prestressed concrete were responsible for the collapse in Haltern. The tower was manufactured and erected by a supplier company that Nordex says has since parted ways. 18 other identical turbines, all in Germany, were stopped by Nordex after the collapse in Haltern. According to the information, the replacement of the concrete towers at these plants has already begun.

According to RWE, the wind farm is in the commissioning phase. At the end of 2021, the manufacturer should hand it over in full to RWE and its partners.

Source: Stern

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