The BRIO project, led by Iberdrola and partners Tecnalia and Gaiker-IK4, which belongs to the European LIFE+ programme, is an initiative that aims to create a new sustainable system to manage and recycle wind turbine blades that are no longer in use, either because they have to be replaced as a result of a breakdown or because the wind farms have come to the end of their useful service life.
The recycling of these major structures has been geared towards recovering the materials used to produce them, so that they can subsequently be taken advantage of as secondary raw materials in other products.
During the demonstration of the final phase of the BRIO project conducted on a pilot scale, the attendees had the chance to witness a mechanical recycling process involving the automatic separation of materials from the blades using optical means and their subsequent crushing to obtain recovered fractions of long fibres and blends of short fibres and polymer materials with the possibility of being used in other sectors.
The long fibre recovered will be re-used to reinforce prefabricated concrete components, while the remaining blade material with insulating properties will be used in cores in multi-layer panels for construction purposes.
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