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The Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult has outlined its ambition to improve the wind turbine blade designs of the future with investment in a prototype blade manufacturing facility.
The Additive Manufacturing for Wind Blades project will install a manufacturing cell at ORE Catapult’s National Renewable Energy Centre in Blyth, UK, capable of proving technologies which can reduce blade manufacturing costs, increase production speeds and explore the potential for new materials with a reduced environmental impact. The blade facility will challenge traditional blade manufacturing processes by using 3D robotic printing techniques, investigating the use of sustainable materials, as well as flexible and more productive manufacturing methods. The facility will also allow the production of prototype blade enhancements such as vortex generators and edge erosion protection systems.
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