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Wind technology being put through its paces

For science and industry, Grevenbroich wind test field provides a service that is quite rare on this continent: The cooperation project tests equipment under real conditions. Thus, it helps to further develop the technology and save greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. It has also been providing the region with clean electricity for 17 years.

Grevenbroich wind test field has been testing wind turbines and components since 1998. In doing so, the testers subject technical innovations for medium to low wind locations to real-world conditions in tests carried out over several years. As a result of the tests, the manufacturers can make wind turbines more efficient, quieter and longer-lasting. Very few test sites worldwide provide these opportunities.

Engine for progress:

  • one of the few services of this kind in the world
  • 45 jobs created
  • interface for research and industry
  • support for the development of innovations
  • clean electricity for the region

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Photo: Windtest

A turbine is usually in place for seven years. The building is also open to external companies – this way, components can be tested in a very detailed manner. For inspections, a robot that inspects the rotor blades is to be tested. As long as technologically new prototypes are being designed for inland use, the wind test field will be continuously further developed.




The Test Field Brings Together Industry and Science and Helps in the Development of Innovations

The operating company, Windtest Grevenbroich, maintains strong partnerships within science and research – and brings these together with industry: The test field has already supported a range of new developments from ATS, Juwi and Siemens. The company is currently working intensively with the Center for Wind Power Drives as part of an international working group to develop measurement guidelines for nacelle test benches in order to optimise test methods.

Focus on New Inspection Technologies

Windtest Grevenbroich also collaborates with the universities in Jülich, Düsseldorf, Duisburg and Cologne. Inspections are currently one of the central subjects of this research; in Grevenbroich, a robot that inspects the rotor blades is being tested. A drone is also making its test flights at the wind test field for a similar purpose.

Good for Grevenbroich

The wind test field in this region that is characterised by the declining lignite mining industry has created 45 jobs. The city and district benefit from wind power produced here – through long-term budgetary savings, so the economic advantages often benefit local citizens too. Windtest Grevenbroich also attracts international expert delegations: The test field operator provides 40 guided tours of the test field per year. These cater to high-level political delegations as well as representatives and associations, universities and school classes who are interested in this service from NRW.

Background to the Wind Test Field:

Grevenbroich wind test field is a public-private cooperation project: The state of NRW owns one quarter and RWE Innogy is the largest shareholder with a 40 per cent share. The TÜV NORD Group are also involved through Energy Engineers, the Rhine District of Neuss and the City of Grevenbroich.

Grevenbroich wind test field project video (German)

Video: KlimaExpo.NRW



Photo: Windtest

"We are proud to say that the operation of our test field makes an active contribution to climate protection, in that we continuously and successfully support the further development of wind energy technology with our services."

Monika Kramer, Managing Director




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