POSSIBILITY OF RECYCLING WIND TURBINE BLADES USING PLASMA TECHNOLOGY
Free (open access)
65 - 71
VIKTORIJA GRIGAITIENĖ, ROLANDAS USCILA, VITAS VALINČIUS, ROMUALDAS KĖŽELIS, MINDAUGAS MILIEŠKA, DOVILĖ GIMŽAUSKAITĖ, VILMA SNAPKAUSKIENĖ, ŽYDRŪNAS KAVALIAUSKAS
The energy produced in wind farms is considered as mostly clean and environmentally friendly. However, a more detailed analysis of the process shows that this notion is not fully conclusive. Problems start already in the early stages of the manufacturing phase of wind turbines and become even more pronounced when they are disposed of at the end of their life-cycle. A review of the worldwide scientific and technical literature on the recycling of wind turbine blades has shown that there are currently no viable treatment methods for this waste. Global science and practice focus on traditional incineration and flame treatment technologies, with fragment mentions of alternative methods. However, traditional incineration and thermal treatments have serious disadvantages, making them almost impossible to obtain a final product suitable for further application. Most importantly, however, the thermal treatment process is not environmentally friendly due to the organic binders in the blades. Plasma treatment could be the alternative technology that can be used for the effective decomposition of all organic and inorganic materials and impurities in wind turbine blades that do not produce secondary waste. The treatment takes place without any special preparation of the raw material, except mechanical comminution. The energy released during the process can be used for the plant’s own needs, as well as for municipal needs. Despite the complexity of the method, plasma facilities also have more advantages. In this work, the possibility of using plasma technology for the utilization of used wind turbine blades was investigated. Low-temperature plasma jet was used to recycle blade composites into gas and fiber melt.
plasma processing, wind turbine blades, waste, composite materials, recycling