Construction has begun on what is envisioned to become LM Glasfiber’s (Lunderskov, Denmark) largest wind turbine blade factory in northern Europe. The company’s third European blade factory, located in Goleniów, in northwest Poland, will supply blades for the fast-growing multimegawatt turbine segment and will be capable of manufacturing blades of more than 60m/197 ft in length.
The factory will have a 280,000m² (about 3 million ft²) footprint and will be constructed in conformity with what LM Glasfiber says is a proven modular factory concept. In the initial phase, the factory should provide work for more than 250 employees and an annual manufacturing capacity of 750 MW. The first teams of employees are already being trained and qualified in Denmark. The factory site has access to road and sea transport, enabling rapid, flexible and cost-effective delivery of large blades to key onshore markets in Northern, Central and Eastern Europe and to the offshore market. Supply from the new factory is expected to begin at the end of 2008, when it will start supplying blades for wind farms operated by Norderstedt, Germany-based Nordex AG in Poland and elsewhere in Europe.
Nordex chief operating officer Hansjörg Müller says, “We are very pleased to be able to secure new blade supply capacity in Poland. Nordex has recently successfully entered the Polish market. In addition, the new factory provides a competitive supply option for large blades for our other European projects, strongly supporting our ambitious growth strategy.”
The Goleniów factory is part of LM Glasfiber’s 2008 expansion program that comprises several capacity additions totaling more than 2,000 MW — double that in 2007. Søren F. Knudsen, VP and chief commercial officer of LM Glasfiber, says the factory will enable his company to respond in a timely manner to the needs of its customers. “I am very happy that we will soon be able to offer Nordex and our other strategic customers new blade supply capacity that significantly adds value to their business in a fast growing wind power market,” says Knudsen.
At the beginning of 2008, LM Glasfiber opened its first facility in Arkansas. An additional factory will be completed at the Port of Little Rock, Ark., during 2008 (see "Editor's Picks," at right). Meanwhile, additional production lines will expand capacity at existing facilities in Denmark and China.