Advanced Material Development (AMD) and Gurit were today awarded GBP392,605 funding from the UK government as part of a round of contracts aimed at reducing the impact of offshore windfarms on Air Defence surveillance.
AMD said the funding will enable the development and testing of its unique nanotechnology that can be integrated into a turbine’s blade structure to reduce a wind farm’s interference with radar systems.
Another aim of the nanotechnology is to enable additional functionality to be incorporated into wind farm structures, including embedded sensors that can monitor the turbine’s structural health, with the aim of increasing the sustainability and longevity of the blades.
Gurit develops, supplies and repairs composite materials for manufacturers of wind turbine blades.
AMD said it will join forces with Gurit to develop the advanced composite materials, incorporating a novel low-cost, nano-scale radar absorbing material (nRAM) at the manufacturing stage.
AMD chief executive John Lee said the integration of AMD’s next-generation technologies at the earliest stage of the manufacturing process will allow the radio frequency absorption to be integrated into the base materials and achieve a cost-effective technology that has not hitherto been possible.
The collaboration makes use of Gurit’s manufacturing capability and AMD’s specialist knowledge in the field of cutting-edge materials science and innovating 2D nanomaterials.
“AMD is committed to researching and developing innovations that will have a positive impact on the environment, so this is exactly the kind of project that we want to be involved with,” said Lee.
“Together with Gurit, we will develop technology that will remove a significant barrier to the creation of more wind farms in the UK. We are proud to be involved in providing key enabling technology to the UK to allow more access to sustainable energy sources in the fight against global warming.”
Gurit’s Keith Netting added: “We are proud to contribute with innovative manufacturing capabilities to the improved safety all while further promoting clean renewable energy.”
The Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) made the awards to seven projects, using funds from the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy’s Net Zero Innovation Portfolio and delivered by the Ministry of Defence.
Wing Commander Kevin Walton, co-chair of the MoD and Offshore Wind Industry Council’s air defence mitigation taskforce, said: “The technology being developed in this competition will help the UK achieve its renewable energy targets without compromising the surveillance of UK airspace.”