Game Changing Robotic Wind Turbine Blade Maintenance
The Robowind’ robot inspects the blade, clean it using laser ablation, repairs “type 1 and 2” blade damage, applies erosion paint coatings, and installs performance enhancement vortex generators and noise reduction serrations. Operators control the robot from the ground, eliminating the need for rope access, climbing towers, or aerial lifts.
Robotic blade maintenance changes the economics and assumptions behind current wind turbine blade maintenance practices:
- Safety: Eliminate the need for human rope access to the blade hundreds of feet above the surface. Unfortunately, physical access to wind turbine blades that are hundreds of feet above the ground currently requires human technicians to access the blades via ropes or high lift aerial cranes. Work is slow, dangerous, and can only be completed when there are optimal conditions.
- Speed: Complete maintenance tasks that take 2-3 days using rope access in under two hours. A group of five robots can service a 100 turbine field in 2-3 weeks vs a year or more for manual rope access.
- Cost: Cut maintenance costs 25% while reducing turbine production lost to maintenance shut-ins. Labor and blade access currently represent >80% of the costs for both blade maintenance and performance enhancement installed manually.
- Performance Enhancement: Increase revenues and turbine ROI by installing performance enhancements like vortex generators and noise reduction serrations that would not be economic if installed using manual rope access.
- Staffing: Reallocate scarce wind turbine technician talent to complete maintenance and repair tasks that cannot be completed using robots and reduce the impact of shortages of trained technicians.
Brands: Robowind blade maintenance robot for 1-5 MW turbines; Robowind blade maintenance robot for 6 to 12 MW offshore turbines