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R&D project

Metrology for enhanced reliability and efficiency of wind energy systems (Met4Wind)

Project period

Start:  September 2020
End:    August 2023


The mechanical components of Wind Energy Systems (WES) are exposed to the highest loads, with torques of up to 20 MNm acting on the blades, and these are transmitted to the drivetrain’s components. Therefore, the requirements on these parts are high and this often results in tight manufacturing tolerances related to their size and mass. Reliable verification of manufacturing tolerances through accurate measurements is a critical part of quality assurance. This project will improve industrial measurement capabilities for the mechanical parts of WES following the Manufacturing Metrology Roadmap 2020 and it will help to accelerate the energy transition by enhancing the efficiency of WES technology.


The overall objective of the project is to enhance the reliability and efficiency of WES by ensuring the traceability of the measurements of their mechanical components, thereby improving industrial production processes to fulfil the demands of the Manufacturing Metrology Roadmap 2020.The specific objectives of the project are:

  1. To investigate fast optical and multi-sensor measurement methods for roughness, form, and dimensions of mechanical components of WES and to determine the associated uncertainties. This will include coordinate measuring machines with different sensor systems (target uncertainties below 5 µm) as well as image processing sensors applied on drones for wear measurements directly at WES.
  2. To develop improved measurement and evaluation methods for the surfaces of industrial and WES drivetrain components, considering material properties, when appropriate. This will include using both tactile and contactless sensors including the comparison of high-speed contact scanning with single-point measurements, considering harmonic content, and development of algorithms for characterisation of these components in a shop floor environment.
  3. To develop a digital twin (DT) of drivetrain and turbine blades to predict the degradation in the turbine’s efficiency based on 2D or 3D images of blade leading edges, wind tunnel experiments and computational fluid dynamics (CFD). This will include a study into the applicability of Model Based Definition (MBD) for measurement script generation.
  4. To evaluate and improve the accuracy of machine tool measuring stations for fast and flexible in-line metrology operating in harsh environments. This will include the development of calibration strategies for in-situ machine measuring systems and an assessment of the feasibility of self calibration methods for rotary axis calibration.
  5. To facilitate the take up of the technology and measurement infrastructure developed in the project by the measurement supply chain, standards developing organisations (e.g. ISO TC 213) and end users (large drivetrain component and turbine blade manufacturers).

Project homepage: https://www.ptb.de/empir2020/met4wind/home/

Project partner

Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB), Cesky Metrologicky Institut, Dansk Fundamental Metrologi A/S, Istituto Nazionale di Ricerca Metrologica, Teknologian tutkimuskeskus VTT Oy, Aalto-korkeakoulusäätiö sr, Aarhus Universitet, Danmarks Tekniske Universitet, ABB Oy, Hexagon Metrology GmbH, Moventas Gears Oy, NCMT Limited, Osakeyhtiö SKF Aktiebolag, VESTAS WIND SYSTEMS A/S, Carl Zeiss Industrielle Messtechnik GmbH     


Dr. rer. nat. Martin Stein (Projektkoordinator) and Kuan Li, M. Sc.