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ANALYSISRENEWABLES


30°. That flexibility allows for wind tower segments to be easily transported to job sites that are difficult to access, due to narrow roads or tight bends.”


Nooteboom’s Quatro TELE-PX Super Wing Carrier.


Delivering wind power by road


products. C


ontinuing growth in the size of wind turbines is driving leading heavy lift road transport equipment suppliers to constantly develop new or enhanced


However, they are having to do so against the background of a market that has seen a slowdown in fleet renewal by some customers due to continuing financial pressures, including a recently renewed push by wind turbine suppliers in certain parts of the world to further reduce the rates they pay for road transport.


The increasing size of wind turbine blades was confirmed late last year when Netherlands based Nooteboom Trailers explained the thinking behind the launch of its latest product, the Quatro Tele-PX Super Wing Carrier, by stating: “The rotating blades that capture energy from the wind used to be 25 m long, then 50 m, and now they can measure almost 70 m in length.” In that context, Han Rekers, sales director for Nooteboom Trailers, said one of the key features of the new Quatro trailer is an option to connect to either the rear end of the gooseneck or underneath it. The latter, he explained, increases the riding height behind the gooseneck by 60 cm (with the trade-off being similarly reduced ground clearance). “That option was specially developed for the big blades of 65-70 m with a rotary diameter (the flange of the rotor blade) of more than 3 m. That means you can still drive the blade within a total height limit of 4.2 m, creating the opportunity to travel normally on motorways.”


Other wind turbine units are also getting


larger, a trend highlighted by Lars Schoedt, Denmark based project manager wind


www.heavyliftpfi.com


applications for German group TII (Transporter Industry International), which includes specialist heavy load road transport equipment manufacturers Scheuerle, Nicolas and Kamag. “I am currently working on some wind turbine projects where the tower sections involved are around 200 tonnes and 6.5 m in diameter,” he commented. Scheuerle’s


latest technological innovation in the market involves the introduction of a wind tower bolster that can be mounted on its InterCombi and InterCombi SPE (self-propelled electronically steered) self-


propelled modular transporters (SPMTs), the Scheuerle-Kamag K25, and a range of Nicolas trailers. “The bolster has a remote-controlled lifting and turning device that can raise wind towers in a parallel position up to 0.75 m and transversely at an angle of 15°,” stated Scheuerle. “Tower segments can be turned left or right up to an angle of


Meanwhile, Nooteboom Trailers claims to be experiencing strong demand for its well-established hydraulically extendable ‘lift adapters’ which enable large tower pieces to be loaded/unloaded onto/from various types of vehicle without the use of a crane. “That equipment can clamp in a tower section of up to 35 m in height, 45 m in diameter and 95 tonnes in weight,” stated Rekers. Less positively for wind turbine road transport equipment manufacturers, many of their customers – the vehicle operators – remain under financial pressure, with a resulting impact on their fleet renewal programmes. “Wind turbine manufacturers are pressing transport operators on price all the time. Here in Denmark, for example, some have had to accept a reduction of 30 percent in price this year at a time when they are already in difficulty,” reported Schoedt. “That is contributing to them not renewing their fleets very quickly at the moment.”


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July/August 2013 71


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