...About the Haliade-X 12MWIt's probably time to take a look at this story from NPR, September 10, 2019:
GE Renewable Energy’s Haliade-X 12MW wind turbine has a rotor diameter of 220 meters. Each blade on the Haliade-X 12MW is 107 meters (351 feet) long sweeping a total area of 38.000 square meters (409,000 square feet).
Unfurling The Waste Problem Caused By Wind Energy
While most of a turbine can be recycled or find a second life on another wind farm, researchers estimate the U.S. will have more than 720,000 tons of blade material to dispose of over the next 20 years, a figure that doesn't include newer, taller higher-capacity versions.....MUCH MORE
There aren't many options to recycle or trash turbine blades, and what options do exist are expensive, partly because the U.S. wind industry is so young. It's a waste problem that runs counter to what the industry is held up to be: a perfect solution for environmentalists looking to combat climate change, an attractive investment for companies such as Budweiser and Hormel Foods, and a job creator across the Midwest and Great Plains.
At the end of a long gravel road on the southwest Nebraska prairie, the state's first wind farm, Kimball Wind Project, is caught in the breeze. But the turbine scrap area looks more like a sci-fi drama set. Rob Van Vleet climbed atop a 127-foot-long turbine blade and walked the length like a plank.
"These towers may be supporting as much as 150,000 pounds, 250 feet in the air," Van Vleet said. "The stands are an inch and a half thick steel ... so they're very strong."
Ninety percent of a turbine's parts can be recycled or sold, according to Van Vleet, but the blades, made of a tough but pliable mix of resin and fiberglass — similar to what spaceship parts are made from — are a different story.
"The blades are kind of a dud because they have no value," he said.
Decommissioned blades are also notoriously difficult and expensive to transport. They can be anywhere from 100 to 300 feet long and need to be cut up onsite before getting trucked away on specialized equipment — which costs money — to the landfill.
Once there, Van Vleet said, the size of the blades can put landfills in a tough spot.
"If you're a small utility or municipality and all of a sudden hundreds of blades start coming to your landfill, you don't want to use up your capacity for your local municipal trash for wind turbine blades," he said, adding that permits for more landfill space add another layer of expenses....
Moving blades and turbines on the water has been pretty much perfected by the Danes, Germans, Norwegians and British, but the blade refuse problem has not been addressed.
Moving blades on land has its own set of, ahhh...challenges:
Think skill and innovation.