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Stilfold, a Swedish design and technology start-up, has introduced a new design concept for the foundation of wind turbines. The design involves creating a series of long, curved beams out of recycled steel; and anchoring them to the ground in a design that mimics the way a tree's roots bury into soil.
The design involves cutting several long triangular pieces of steel from a large flat sheet; and folding each piece down the centre to create a series of tall, tent-shaped 3D beams. Each beam would be designed and constructed according to site-specific conditions following a ground scan, using Stilfold’s computer-guided software and ‘industrial origami’ manufacturing technology. The technology involves the use of robotic arms to fold steel over curves to form light, strong and sustainable new structures with minimal component parts. The triangular beams would be placed side-by-side and twisted together before being bonded to form a tall, strong, and durable foundation that curves outwards at the bottom like a root structure. The bottom of each of the beams would be anchored to the ground individually for improved stability.
Stilfold will be working with European partners to commercialise the design this year.
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