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4th October 2016, UK

Safer solution for Siemens turbines

The combination replaces the steel panel and traditional bolt fixings which needed two people to lock and unlock them. © bigHead The specialised bonding fasteners of Vernon, UK-based bigHead are being employed on the composite nacelle maintenance hatches of the latest Siemens 6 MW offshore wind turbines.

This combination replaces the steel panel and traditional bolt fixings which needed two people to lock and unlock them, posing a problem in respect of ease of access and safety.

On each composite panel, 316 marine grade stainless steel ‘bigHeads’ are surface bonded to the outer skin and the threaded stud section is passed through the composite structure, so that it can be easily secured or removed by a single person from the much safer interior of the structure.

The bigHead’s large perforated head allows a generous flow of adhesive to firmly secure it in position and its outer surface includes an over-moulded insulation layer that safeguards the nacelle against lightning strikes as well as matching its colour.

bigHead worked with Siemens through a stringent development stage – prototyping and extreme testing the solution against the harsh conditions that the offshore wind turbines need to endure, until a final design was agreed. Now in its third year of supply, the solution has been thoroughly field proven. Like all bigHead’s produced at the company’s UK factory, every production batch is tested and documented with completely traceable results as part of the manufacturer’s ISO 9001:2008 Quality Management System.

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