Defying the weather - tough erosion protection tapes for wind power stations

Turbine edges are subject to wear - particularly during offshore operation. The costs for repairs are considerable, as are the down times, according to the location and the availability of, for example, cranes or hydraulic ramps. Replaceable polyurethane

Protective PU-adhesive tape for blades
(PresseBox) ( Frankenthal, )
At blade speeds of up to 300 km/h, grains of sand, particles of salt, insects or other things floating in the air seem abrasive. This has a negative impact on the surface of the turbine blades, particularly on their leading edges. Here, there is abrasion of the turbine surface and, therefore, a loss in aerodynamics and stability.

This is the problem that CMC Klebetechnik tackled. High performance adhesive tapes have been produced for the electrical industry for a long time. They are based on polymer films, such as Kapton­, Polyester, APTIV PEEK, PTFE, Nowofol­ ET, Makrofol­, FEP or UHMW-PE. Some of these films are also highly suitable for use as a surface protection system.

For the turbine blade edges that are under particular strain, impact resistant, abrasion-resistant polyurethane tapes are available as a "sacrifice surface". These clear, very flexible films are resistent to atmospheric contitions and UV-rays. The adhesive has a long-term resistance to weathering and yellowing, even after several years. Thus, even damages under the film can be detected in the turbine blade inspections, which take place every 2 to 4 years. Ice adhesion and dirt residues are also reduced by the protective PU-film.

The 0.300 mm strong tape of the standard product CMCprotect 63630 resists erosion in the long term and thus contributes to cost-effective operation. Long service intervals reduce maintenance costs and lengthen the period of use of the blades for several years. The PU adhesive tape is also relatively easy to remove. This greatly facilitates maintenance work on a turbine blade that has not been dismantled.

The basic principle of the protection effect is based on the very flexible but extremely resilient surface of the PU tape. This assimilates the impact energy of the floating particles and absorbs these or distributes the impact to a greater area.

As a manufacturer, CMC Klebetechnik not only offers the standard product CMCprotect 63630 in all sizes requested by the customers, but also, upon request, develops variants in tape and adhesive assignments. Thus, adhesive tapes adapted to the individual situation can be used.

PU erosion protection tapes are already used successfully at various wind parks. The advantages when compared to, for example, Gelcoates, are the possibility of more precise doses, due to the pre-determined strength of the tape, and simple assembly and dismantling. The polyurethane film is equipped with a weathering-resistant solvent - acrylate adhesive, which achieves a high level of initial adhesion even at low temperatures. The entire protective system does not contain substances that are harmful to the environment, such as solvents, VOCs or heavy metals.
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