Wind turbine towers are built with two key considerations in mind: 1) they must be tall enough to reach the greatest possible wind resource, and ; 2) they must be strong enough to hold nacelles (the modules holding the wind turbine’s generating components) that weigh upwards of 200 tonnes. To date, steel has been the material choice for the sleek towers with their trademark white auto-grade paint finish.
As it turns out, steels is not the only material sturdy enough to withstand the forces of the gravity and wind. The blades of a German-built wooden wind turbine just started spinning. The company behind the pilot project in Hanover, TimberTower, is spruiking the eco-benefits of its design. According to them, the wooden tower is less energy and carbon intensive than steel, and can be recycled once decommissioned.
Will the wooden wind tower take off? Will we see wooden towers join their steel brothers and sisters in farms across Australia? Time will tell. For the full story, check out Gizmag.