Energy Secretary Steven Chu, accompanied by Maine Gov. John Baldacci, Sen. Susan Collins and Reps. Michael Michaud and Chellie Pingree, toured the university’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center to learn more about its 10-year plan to design and test floating deep-water wind turbine platforms.
According to Habib Dagher, the centre director: “”A major part of our research effort is evaluating the use of advanced composites, enhanced fibers and resin systems, for the offshore wind application. These materials provide an opportunity to reduce deployment and maintenance costs, which can be more significant offshore than on land.”
“The new $30 million offshore wind laboratory at UMaine will have the ability to design and produce full size components of towers, foundations and blades for land based and offshore wind and to test these components under one roof. Advanced robotics manufacturing processes will be researched and evaluated. This will accelerate the development of new more competitive technologies for both land based and offshore wind. We are pleased that with 85,000 ft2 of lab space for design, manufacturing and testing of advanced composite structures, we will are now be better able to serve the growing renewable energy industry sector.”
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