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Stora Enso partners with Voodin Blades

 Wednesday, November 16, 2022

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Stora Enso signed a contract with Voodin Blade Technology to develop wood-based sustainable wind turbine blades. The joint venture is committed to incorporating a competitive and reliable supply chain for sustainably developed alternatives for wind turbine blades. A 20 m blade for a 0.5 MW turbine is currently being manufactured and installed, and an 80 m blade is planned.

A 0.5 megawatt turbine near Warburg, Germany, will have the 20 m blade installed

Fibreglass and carbon fibre, two energy-intensive, non-renewable plastics created from petrochemicals that are difficult to recycle, are commonly used in the production of wind power blades. Nowadays, tens of thousands of outdated blades end up in landfills. A new business in Germany called Voodin Blades is working to create environmentally friendly rotor blades for wind turbines. Laminated veneer lumber (LVL), a building material appropriate for wind power construction, is one of the mass timber products offered by Stora Enso, a major global supplier. Stora Enso and Voodin Blades can make the blades lighter and less dependent on the extraction of fossil fuels by creating blades from sustainable wood. The collaboration supports Stora Enso’s strategic offering of cutting-edge methods for switching to wood-based, renewable materials in place of less environmentally friendly ones. For the new blades, Stora Enso is providing only sustainably harvested wood. Stora Enso’s LVL, a mass-produced wood product with a high load-bearing capacity that is well suited for supporting huge rotary blades, will be used to create the first 20-meter blade. LVL is easier to carry on-site than steel or concrete without the use of heavy machinery. It also has a small carbon footprint and is a renewable material. By the end of 2022, a 0.5 megawatt turbine near Warburg, Germany, will have the 20 m blade installed.

“With the current energy crisis and ambitious decarbonisation goals, wind energy has never been more in demand. Through this partnership with Voodin Blades we further accelerate our ability to develop a sustainable and competitive supply chain for the growing market of wind turbine blades,” said Lars Völkel, Executive Vice President, Wood Products Division, Stora Enso.

“The wind industry as a key driver towards carbon neutrality needs to become 100% sustainable and environmentally friendly. With the installation of the 20 m blade, we are opening a path towards a more sustainable future. In time we will start to develop and manufacture blades for future multi-megawatt turbines,” said Joachim Knapp, mechanical engineer and automation expert with Voodin Blades.

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