Blade test equipment

How to validate your wind turbine blades

Wind turbine blades are subject to both aerodynamic loads and inertial loads, which cause them to bend and twist in different directions. As blade design continues to increase in dimension and proportion, the requirements of your test equipment increase as well.

The wind turbine blade testing solutions from R&D Test Systems enable you to verify your rotor blades according to the international standard IEC 61400-23.

The static test setup consists of a winch and a wire system, which can apply extreme loads in a controlled manner according to your defined test program.

The fatigue test setup for accelerated lifetime testing consists of an electrical ground-based and/or a tower-based exciter. The main advantages of the systems include more control of the test compared to conventional methods and a more accurate target bending loading distribution along the blade with less dead weight on the blade.
This results in shorter testing time compared to traditional moving mass exciters.

The electrical blade exciter solution has been developed in close cooperation with BLAEST Blade Test Centre DK and has been demonstrated through several blade tests, including the world's largest blade in 2017 (88.4m).

Benefits of using the Electrical Blade Exciters

  • Little/no added mass to the blade
  • Low energy consumption
  • High excitation force
  • Accurate control of frequency and applied forces
  • Shorter testing time compared to traditional moving mass exciters
  • Limited maintenance needed, compared to hydraulic-based test systems
Blade test equipment exciter

Fatigue testing

By using a Ground-based Flap Exciter and a Tower-based Edge Exciter, you can perform a full-scale fatigue test of your blade.

The exciter setup consists of an electrical, variable-speed drive and motor, gearbox, rocker arm, push rod and blade yoke. Depending on what you prefer, the exciters can either be mounted on your existing strong floor or installed on an individual foundation.

Blade test equipment

Static testing

The static test equipment is designed to apply appropriate, extreme loads in all directions, i.e. towards the leading edge, trailing edge, suction side and pressure side in order to validate the blade design.

The system consists of blade yokes, ground-based winches and wires, which can be configured to cover a wide range of static load capabilities. It is possible to select different wire types such as synthetic rope, steel wire etc. Wire encoders can be included to obtain 6DoF position measurement of each point of attack for accurate control and evaluation of the blade test loads.

Customised solution

The equipment from R&D Test Systems can be customised to fit your specific needs for rotor blade testing. We can design and supply blade test solutions from individual parts to turnkey solutions. These include:

  • Blade test foundation blocks for mounting of the blades
  • Strong floors
  • Winches
  • Wires
  • Exciters
  • Control systems for winches and exciters
  • Data acquisition systems
  • Buildings to accommodate the entire blade test facility