The cluster CU BW established the “Fiber Composites in Wind Energy” working group in October 2014 with a focus on the development and manufacture of rotor blades. Wind energy is one of the major growth industries for the use of carbon fiber materials (CFRP). The background for this is, among other things, the construction of very long rotor blades of about 80 m with a view to stiffness and mass savings. Of particular interest appear to be the increased use of automation options in blade production, possibly with the integration of QA, new construction methods, semi-finished fiber products and matrix systems, and optimization of infusion processes.
The first action of the WG will be to focus on C-fibers, semi-finished products and matrix systems: A market study should be made to find out where the journey should go, especially with a view to C-fiber/CFRP use and automatable approaches in manufacturing.
The aim of the market study was – with a focus on the high-end product of rotor blades made of carbon fibers in combination with adapted matrix systems – to work out the added value of this FVW combination, particularly with regard to sustainability, performance enhancement and cost aspects.