Business World of Renewable Energy

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DIN Sets Industry Standards For The First Time For Dismantling Wind Turbines

Hanover, Berlin, Dresden / Germany - With the end of the 20-year EEG compensation period, the question will arise in the next few years for many thousands of wind turbines (WTGs) as to whether continued operation is possible or whether decommissioning is necessary. As there has not been a deconstruction standard so far, neither in Germany nor in Europe.

This will change with the DIN SPEC 4866 by the German Institute for Standardization (DIN) e.V. published now (17.07.2020). "Sustainable Dismantling, Disassembly, Recycling and Recovery of Wind Turbines” is the title of the 26-page document, which defines the framework conditions for the entire dismantling process, starting with the planning and implementation and ending with the documentation.

DIN SPEC 4866: Establishing industry standards as "best practice" for dismantling

For example, DIN SPEC 4866 contains recommendations on how the construction site must be secured and which qualifications the workers who carry out the dismantling need to have. The DIN describes how rotor blades, tower and nacelle ought to be dismantled and which safety measures are necessary to prevent any harmful substances from escaping into the environment. It also explains which components of the wind turbine can be recycled or recovered in which way, how the dismantling has to be documented and which official authorizations are necessary in which German federal stat.

The recommendations are intended to help operators and specialized companies to plan and carry out dismantling projects. Both the operators of wind farms and demolition and recycling companies can thus agree on a standardized procedure in future. In addition, DIN SPEC 4866 also helps municipalities and authorities to monitor and assess the dismantling.

The new industry standard is available free of charge in German and English from Beuth Verlag and is thus also available to the European wind industry and authorities as a template for their own activities.

In RDRWind e.V., VSB Gruppe plays a leading role in developing the first industry standard

DIN SPEC 4866 has been drawn up under the leadership of the VSB Group by a consortium of 25 companies. This included experts from the wind energy industry, recycling experts, scientists as well as officials of authorities, such as the Federal Environment Agency. The decommissioning standard is based on an initiative of the Industrial Association for Repowering, Dismantling and Recycling of Wind Turbines (RDRWind e.V.), founded in Hanover at the end of 2018.

“Our special concern is sustainable dismantling. Wind turbines are friendly to the environment and shall remain so even if they have reached the end of their service life. The recycling rate of wind turbines is already very high and currently stands at more than 90 percent," says Martin Westbomke, 1st Chairman of RDRWind. This is also the view of Andrea Aschemeyer from VSB Neue Energien Deutschland GmbH, which led the consortium that developed DIN SPEC 4866. "To date, there has not been a uniform procedure for the dismantling of wind turbines," says Aschemeyer. She added that it was important for VSB and all the other partners involved to make it clear to the public as well as to local and government authorities that the industry works professionally. “With this DIN specification, we are documenting in black and white how the dismantling process can be carried out in a uniform, safe and environmentally aware manner", Aschemeyer continued.

Source: IWR Online, 24 Jul 2020