Development of a High-fidelity Experimental Substructure Test Rig for Grid-scored Sandwich Panels in Wind Turbine Blades

S Lausten*, E Lund, L Kühlmeier, O T Thomsen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

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Abstract

This paper outlines high‐fidelity experimental substructure testing of sandwich panels which constitute the aerodynamic outer shell of modern wind turbine blades. A full‐scale structural experimental and numerical characterisation of a composite wind turbine blade has been conducted. The development of a full‐scale numerical model is detailed, and the necessary experimental set‐up is described. Further, the numerical and experimental results obtained are compared, and an idealised set of boundary conditions for a chosen blade substructure is presented. From this, the development of a test rig suitable for representing the established loading and boundary conditions is presented, and some preliminary experimental results are discussed. The work provides a road map for developing high‐fidelity experimental substructure tests, which in more generic terms are applicable to similar developments of substructure tests for composite wind turbine blades. Furthermore, recommendations on the use of grid‐scored sandwich structures in wind turbine blades are presented, which outline the sensitivity in terms of quasi‐static strength to the established loading conditions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-131
Number of pages21
JournalStrain – An International Journal for Experimental Mechanics
Volume50
Issue number2
Early online date30 Oct 2013
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Mar 2014

Keywords

  • experimental characterisation
  • numerical characterisation
  • substructure testing
  • wind turbine blades

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