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Siemens Energy has opened two major research and development (R&D) test facilities for wind turbine technology in Denmark.

The first test center, located in Brande, features test stands for major components of Siemens wind turbines, including generators, main bearings and complete nacelles. The other facility, located in Aalborg, contains seven blade test stands capable of performing full-scale tests of rotor blades.

The two test centers feature indoor testing facilities totaling more than 27,000 square meters. The nacelle test stands in Brande are capable of testing Siemens' D6 direct-drive platform, as well as the company's 6 MW wind turbines, Siemens says, adding that the test stands are prepared to test even larger turbines. The Aalborg facility is able to test Siemens' 75-meter-long B75 blade, the largest wind turbine blade in operation, as well as even larger blades, Siemens adds.

At the new test facilities, Siemens can perform its Highly Accelerated Lifetime Tests (HALT) on all major components of its direct-drive and geared wind turbine platforms. In HALT testing programs, which can last up to six months, Siemens exposes prototypes to much higher loads than they would normally experience over the course of their full lifetime in the field.

"In HALT tests, we compress the biggest loads over a short time, as they affect the turbine the most,” says Siemens Wind Power CEO Felix Ferlemann.

During the HALT test of blades, for example, full-scale prototypes are oscillated at larger deflections than they would ever experience on-site for 2 million cycles vertically and then for another 2 million cycles horizontally.


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