University College Dublin, Trinity College Dublin, University of Galway, University College Cork, Munster Technological University and Gavin and Doherty Geosolutions
About WindLEDeRR Project

About WindLEDeRR Project

Wind turbines are normally designed for 20 years lifetime. In Ireland, there will be a significant number of onshore wind turbines reaching their end-of-life (500 turbines by 2025 and 1000 by 2030). There are generally three options for wind plants at end-of-life: life extension, decommissioning and repowering.

WindLEDeRR is a 3-year research, development and demonstration (RD&D) project funded by Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) and led by University College Dublin, which is developing a comprehensive decision-making tool for end-of-life wind turbines in Ireland. This project is developing such tools through life assessment for the critical components of wind turbines including foundation, tower and blades. A holistic structural dynamic models of wind turbines is being developed using a multi-body approach which accounts for the aeroelastic behaviour of the wind turbines employing Irish meteorological conditions.

WindLEDeRR developes cutting-edge structural health monitoring techniques for lifetime extension of wind turbines. Novel approaches are also being developed for anomaly detection and fatigue assessment of the tower structure through smart advanced identification methods. In addition, a new methodology will be developed for predicting remaining fatigue life and residual strength of wind turbines’ blades periodically until their end-of-life. Lifecycle assessment of foundations will be developed which will provide a set of recommendation outlining options for the foundation to include remaining operational life.

Furthermore, WindLEDeRR considers a range of energetic, environmental, social and economic factors in order to arrive at optimal solutions for sustainable decommissioning of end-of-life wind turbines in Ireland. Finally, a new protocol will be developed for repurposing decommissioned blades for specific purposes.  The results will form the most authoritative evidence base around the topic for Ireland and will be an international benchmark.

Funded by: