3B-the fibreglass company introduces the second game-changing product in its new benchmark series for wind turbine rotor blades.

HiPer-texW2020 high performance fibre glass allows longer and lighter blades for both offshore and onshore wind turbines.

Battice, Belgium – February 20, 2012 – Pursuing its strategy to lead the innovation of glass fibre solutions for the wind energy sector, 3B-the fibreglass company is launching HiPer-tex W2020 high performance roving to satisfy OEMs’ needs for longer and lighter rotor blades to meet the challenging offshore and bigger onshore multi-megawatt wind turbines.

Building upon the recently developed sizing technology applied to SE2020 made with Advantex® glass, the new HiPer-tex W2020 is also specifically engineered for epoxy polymer systems used in resin infusion or prepreg processes.

3B’s technological expertise and manufacturing know-how delivers a high modulus glass with outstanding mechanical properties providing significantly greater strength and strain-to-failure than traditional E-glass. The new HiPer-tex W2020 roving offers the following exceptional properties in a typical unidirectional laminate (average glass volume fraction 60%):

  • 54-56 GPa  E-modulus
  • 55-60 MPa transverse tensile strength
  • 10 times longer lifetime in fatigue resistance versus traditional E-glass

HiPer-tex W2020 provides the answer to the evolving market requirements for stiffer and better performing materials. Its optimized glass composition combined with proprietary sizing technology for epoxy systems allow turbine manufacturers to increase blade lengths while keeping blade weight under control. These longer blades generate higher turbine efficiency leading to a lower cost per kWh,” says Luc Peters, 3B wind technical leader.

When comparing blades manufactured with traditional E-glass, HiPer-tex W2020 achieves up to 10% weight saving for the same blade design and length. Alternatively, the blade length can be extended by up to 6% while maintaining the same weight but offering up to 12% more energy output.

HiPer-tex W2020 offers better wet-out therefore a more consistent laminate quality. The significantly improved resin matrix adhesion provides higher shear strength and substantially greater interfibre strength when compared with existing high modulus fibre glass in the market place.

These attributes, together with the subsequent excellent fatigue performance, very good hydrolysis and the inherent corrosion resistance due to the boron-free glass formulation, makes the new HiPer-tex W2020 roving the benchmark solution that designers need to greatly improve existing rotors and, more importantly, to help create the next generation of epoxy blades for offshore and onshore wind turbines.

Onur Tokgoz, 3B wind energy global business leader: “3B is collaborating with the whole value chain in the wind industry sector to bring to market new cost competitive and high performance reinforcements which further pushes the limits of glass fibre rotor blade designs.”

Tokgoz goes on to say, “Aligned with 3B’s strategy to be the wind energy solution provider we are contributing to the reduction of the cost of energy with this important addition to our new benchmark series of products. 3B is keen to lead the development of new glass reinforcement solutions to support and enable the growth of multi-megawatt wind turbines.”