finance

Edge Solutions gets backing for wind farm protection tech



Edge Solutions has secured £700,000 in funding from several private investors to help roll out its armourEDGE product, which it believes will transform the maintenance of wind farms.

The Dundee-based business has developed an aerodynamic ‘erosion shield’ which repairs eroded wind turbine blades – a problem know as ‘leading edge erosion’ affecting many operational wind turbines.

The armourEDGE system is currently being installed on an operational offshore wind farm in Northern Europe.

Edge Solutions managing director David Urch explained: “With tip speeds approaching 330 km/h, continual impacts by rain, hail, ice and other airborne particulates damage the blade surface, leading to increased drag and reduced energy production.

“This drives up operating cost due to increased maintenance downtime and ultimately blade replacement,” he added.

A recent study by the UK’s Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult suggested that combating leading edge blade erosion on UK offshore wind farms could boost annual energy production by up to 2%, increasing revenue by as much as £3.5m on a 500MW offshore wind farm.

“Each armourEDGE shield is up to one metre long and is custom formed to the exact blade type and then bonded into place by trained technicians – this allows rapid installation which results in less downtime and improved profitability for wind farm owners,” Urch stated.

The shields are made from Ineos Styrolution’s Luran SC thermoplastic material, created specifically for wind turbine blades.

The company is working with a wind turbine maintenance provider to deliver certified technicians to support its roll out programme.

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