WindCom’s new sub-zero platform is designed for the Kaufer 360° platform and works well when blade damage repairs are needed well up the blade. Seven of WindCom’s ten platforms are Kaufer, so enlarging the fleet of Kaufer sub-zero platforms is a priority. Although the present sub-zero design works well, it is limited to our Asmus platforms and can only be used near the tip of the blade where most lightning strikes occur. The new design takes into consideration the past six years of experience using the sub-zero platform. Although the first of the new designs is still in production, they will be ready when the temperatures get cold. Some of the new benefits include:
Severe blade damages such as chord-wise cracks or trailing edge splits can now be considered. Getting a turbine running in the winter can be a big payback.
Technicians are being trained not only how to set up and use the platforms but how to deal with cold weather dangers such as hypothermia and frostbite. The latest safety training module is “Extreme Weather.”
Sub-zero platforms allow the technicians to work in a warm environment which also heats the blades enough for the resins to cure. Resins, adhesives, and putties are kitted with the winter hardeners. After this process is complete, the entire repaired area will be post cured to allow for 100% of the resin properties.
Although the repairs may take longer than normal due to the setup, after the project is complete, the turbine will return to full function again and continue production through the winter when the winds are at their best in most of the country.