The energy challenge is one of the greatest tests faced by Europe and Flanders today. In 2010, the European Union adopted binding rules that 20% of the energy supply needs to be generated by renewable sources by 2020. Wind energy will provide an important contribution to achieving these targets. In order to increase efficiency, an increased trend towards off-shore wind energy has been observed as well as a constant increase in turbine size. To bring the cost of electricity generated by wind power down to a competitive level, technological research and development is needed on all aspects of the turbines.
The focus of the MaDurOS program is primarily on the steel support structures for off-shore wind turbines, more specifically on the material behavior under combined durability conditions: the combination of corrosion and abrasion and the combination of corrosion and fatigue.
The gained knowledge will also be applicable to other metallic materials used in off-shore applications, such as for dredging.
There are three objectives in the MaDurOS program:
- To gain deeper insight into the material behavior under combined durability conditions
- Develop, build and offer medium/large scale combined loading testing facilities to allow for material screening or development
- Develop new or improved alloys, material processing techniques, material applications and monitoring techniques to strengthen the long term competitive position of Flanders in the off-shore market.
A large group of Flemish industrial players in different domains and positions on the value chain has already committed to support this initiative: OCAS/ArcelorMittal, Jan De Nul, Allard, Elsyca, Laborelec, Bekaert, Vincotte, METAlogic, Smulders and Zensor.
The associated knowledge centers for the MaDuROS program are: KULeuven, UGent, VUB, Sirris and BIL.
For more detailed background information regarding this research program, please consult the attached documents.