Wind turbine blade manufacturer LM Wind Power completed the first transport journey with its 88.4 metre (290 feet) blade, said by the company to be the longest ever.
The Netherlands-based company created the LM 88.4 P to power an 8 megawatt wind turbine that can withstand 25 years of life offshore in the harshest weather conditions and the roughest seas, the company said. One set of three 88.4 m blades is capable of powering around 10,000 homes.
LM Wind Power took the blade on a 218 kilometre journey starting at 9:45 pm on 30 June from its factory in Lunderskov, Denmark and finishing at 3:30 am the next morning at Aalborg, Denmark where it will undergo further testing.
The company spent nine months planning this transport. Koos van der Zee, blade transportation senior manager at LM Wind Power, said, “The whole experience was amazing - hundreds of people lining the streets and bridges, to watch the world’s longest blade pass. The entire trip went smoothly, without any problems, thanks to incredible teamwork between all the companies involved, including our colleagues at LM Wind Power, the police and the highway agency.”
The entire route was carefully mapped out in advance, and specialists were ready to temporarily dismantle guardrails and sign posts where necessary. The full cargo measured just under 100 m long, with a loaded height of 4.47 m at its highest point - allowing for only 3 centimetres of extra space when passing under bridges.
Successfully transporting the world’s longest blade was a proud moment for employees and the local community in Lunderskov, and entire families came to the factory to watch and wave flags, the company explained.
The company produced its first wind turbine blades in the 1970s, measuring less than 10 m long at the time.