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December 15, 2016 - Assembly

Wind Power and the Smart Adhesives for It

According to the American Wind Energy Association, the American wind energy installed 520 megawatts (MW) of wind power in the first quarter of 2016, bringing the current wind capacity up to 74,512 (MW).

With an additional 5,100 MW in advanced stages of development, let’s take a closer look at how wind power works and the role adhesives play in wind power turbine assembly.

How Wind Power Works

Large turbines, often built on farms called wind farms, are able to capture the energy of moving air and convert it into electricity. It does this in the following way:

The wind’s energy turns the turbine’s propeller blades around a rotor. This rotor is connected to a main shaft, which spins a generator, creating electricity.

While the U.S. currently only has land-based wind turbines, the Department of Energy is funding efforts to make turbines in the ocean as well.

wind power

Wind Power Turbine Assembly

A wind power turbine is comprised of three main parts: the tower, the nacelle and the
blades.

  • Tower: The tower is typically made of steel and coated with zinc alloy for protection. While manufactured offsite, the tower’s steel parts are bolted together and assembled on location.
  • Nacelle: The nacelle is a strong, hollow, fiberglass shell that contains the inner workings of the turbine, such as the gearbox and blade pitch control. These items are assembled onto a base frame at a factory and bolted to the tower on site.
  • Blades: Blades are typically hollow fiberglass but can also be solid, lightweight wood or aluminum.

Wind Power Turbine Adhesives

While the turbine itself is bolted together onsite, adhesives are used in the construction of each part. Bostik manufactures smart adhesives for blade assembly as well as lubrication, panel bonding and general assembly. These wind turbine adhesives are the smart choice for several reasons, including:

  • Excellent UV, weather and temperature resistance
  • Environmental friendliness: solvent, isocyanate and silicone-free
  • Very good aging properties
  • Lightweight yet durable

For more information on Bostik’s wind power turbine adhesives, call 800-7-BOSTIK, or visit www.bostik.com/us.

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