A lidar being used to measure


The overall purpose is to establish tools that can be used to assess the remaining useful life of wind turbine rotor blades individually. Then, it becomes possible to extend the service life of most wind turbine blades beyond their original 20 years’ service life, say by additionally 10-15 years.  


The work program includes non-destructive evaluation methods that can uncover damage inside blades, destructive materials testing to measure the mechanical properties of aged materials 

and fracture mechanics-based models that can predict how fast the detected damage will grow in the future under static and cyclic loading. Combined, the technologies enable the calculation of how long time it takes until a blade with a given damage fails. The methodology will be demonstrated on older wind turbine blades having been in service for more than 20 years. 


Wind turbine owners are the primary users of the proposed methodology. They will earn more money by selling more electricity from the same turbines for several years more than it was original planed. Additional economic benefits could be new business areas such as non-destructive inspection (detection of damages) and consultants that calculates the remaining useful blade life from the damage state of blades.




Bent F. Sørensen
DTU Wind Energy
+45 46 77 58 06
1 OCTOBER 2020