Test Centers | Laboratories
Fraunhofer Institute for Wind Energy and Energy System Technology
- © Fraunhofer IWES
Offshore Test Locations
The cumulative loads at an offshore test site differ considerably from the loads on materials in laboratory tests. Materials are subjected to extreme conditions offshore: temperature fluctuations, increased UV radiation, exposure to seawater, biologically induced corrosion and mechanical loads. At four test locations – Wilhelmshaven, Sylt, Helgoland and at the mouth of the River Weser – materials and components are being tested under offshore conditions in order to acquire new knowledge about the long-term stability of sensor systems. As the environmental conditions at the locations differ, so do the damage profiles. Accordingly, customized strategies for protection are being developed. Sensors are being increasingly used in offshore wind turbines for recording material fatigue data. They can detect very small changes in the material structure and report these to the system. The results are used for validation and improvement of current laboratory test methods. Laboratory material tests designed to mimic and increase the real loads are able to give meaningful statements in a short space of time. In turn, these results are used for developing general standard tests for offshore materials and components. New methods for material testing are also developed for specific tasks.
The facilities are also part of the Marinet network, that builds a synergy amoung Marine Renewable Energy test sites across the European Union. This also enables foreign customers to use them free of charge under conditions. Detailed information are available on the project website: