Vestas V112 failure down to 'human error'

DENMARK: Vestas' investigation into the blade failure on its prototype V112 3MW turbine has found the incident was the result of human error during the manufacturing process.

The company admitted the manually-produced blade had not been subjected to Vestas’ normal testing programme prior to installation. Subsequently, it said it was changing its testing process to ensure prototype components met a higher criteria.

To ensure transparency over the verdict, Vestas said it would be appointing a third-party to conduct an independent investigation into the failure.

The failure follows only weeks after Vestas signed a deal with a group to supply 140 of the turbines for a 420MW project in Australia, which will be the largest in the southern hemisphere.

Responding to questions at the time questions over whether the turbine had been tested enough for such a large project, Vestas president Ditlev Engel insisted the turbine had been thoroughly tested. Engel added that he was "very confident" it was ready to be installed on a wind farm of this size.

According to reports, a 6-metre to 7-metre portion of a blade broke off the prototype yesterday. In response, Vestas said it was investigating the reasons but denied it was a design failure.

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