Inspection of Composite Wind Turbine Blades with Advanced Ultrasonic Phased Array Technology

Lamarre, Andre; Olympus Scientific Solutions America; Canada

Lamarre, A.; Olympus Scientific Solutions Americas; Canada

ID: ECNDT-0013-2018
Download: PDF
Session: Energy Generation
Room: G3
Date: 2018-06-12
Time: 16:20 - 16:40

In-service wind turbines blades are subjected to high levels of stress. Consequently, the bonding between the blade’s structural beams and shell must be characterized during manufacturing to help ensure blade integrity. The blades should also be clear of defects, like delamination and wrinkles.
The material used to construct wind blades, such as fiberglass and carbon reinforced plastics (CRP), pose particular challenges to ultrasonic inspection, and the industry has been searching for a simple and reliable solution.
Olympus manufactures a variety of tools that make it easier to detect and size flaws in different areas of the blades. These tools include low-frequency linear phased array probes and probe holders combined with off-the-shelf ultrasonic phased array instruments and software bundled in a convenient, easy-to-use package. The advantages of using phased array include the fast inspection speed, small resolution, and full coverage of the inspected area.
This paper illustrates how advanced ultrasonic phased array technology contributes to the improved integrity of composite wind turbine blades during manufacturing.