Dyneema® goes where polyester cannot
The new generation of larger wind installations pose no problem for Dyneema®. Slings made with Dyneema® SK78 are significantly stronger than polyester, at one fifth of the weight. They are also easy to maintain, inspect, and repair, which increases uptime and reduces costs. Lifting slings with Dyneema® SK78 can also be recertified, allowing them to be used on multiple projects, so lowering the cost per lift. Further advantages include their softness and flexibility, as this makes them safer for crews, loads, and structures. The fact that they are also torque-free and show similar elongation to steel wire rope, gives full control to the crane operator. Lastly, they float on water and are resistant to chemicals and salt.
World’s biggest offshore wind farm
Walney Extension, off the UK coast, in the Irish Sea, is a good example of the current state of the wind farm industry. Built, owned and operated by Dong Energy, it is the first wind farm to employ turbines rated at over 8 MW (actually 8.25 MW). It highlights the speed at which the industry is developing.
The original wind farm, known as Walney 1 and 2, dates back to 2011 and 2012. At that time, it was the world’s largest operational offshore wind farm. Its 102 turbines max out at 3.6 MW each, providing 367 MW of total power. Walney Extension, by comparison, has fewer turbines – 87 of them. However, these turbines are rated at 7 MW and 8 MW, and the new wind farm can produce 660 MW of power – enough for more than 460,000 homes. It looks set to reclaim the world’s biggest title once on-stream.