Finnish hollow stainless steel section manufacturer Stalatube has selected Outokumpu’s duplex stainless steel as one of the main construction material for its new StalaWind wind power towers. Duplex stainless steel is a strong and durable material, which provides very good features in this demanding application.
Says Markku Koponen, Director of Stalatube’s Energy Sector: “The turbine manufacturers demand taller towers, because at heights of more than 100 meters, the energy output of the towers increases by an average of one percent every additional meter. As a solution, Stalatube has designed steel hybrid towers, essentially made of stainless steel tubes that can take turbines up to heights of 140 to 160 meters or more.”
Due to the strength of duplex stainless steel, the towers are remarkably lighter compared to the conventional towers in the market today. The lighter structure makes both the transportation and the onsite installation easier and cost efficient, not to forget also low CO2 emissions for the entire life cycle.
Says Sales Manager Pekka Heinonen from Outokumpu: “The selected stainless duplex grade is LDX 2101®. It is particularly suitable for wind power towers due to its strength, because it allows thinner walls, resulting in lighter structure and cost savings, as less welding is required.”
Stainless steel is durable material. During the lifecycle of wind power tower, stainless steel does not require maintenance, and when tower reaches the end of its life after 20 to 30 years, stainless steel can be either reused or fully recycled.