Barneveld-based company Business in Wind has more than 25 years of experience, and is a specialist in the buying and selling of second-hand turbines all over the world. 'Our strength is that thanks to the commitment of businesses such as Certion, we can add value by dismantling and reconditioning turbines', Robbertsen explains. 'We are not just box-shifters, but manage the entire pathway, including the removal of the foundations as well as transport and installation'.
The circular economy is the starting point for the vision of Business in Wind. According to the company, it is – and should be – perfectly feasible to extend the life of a wind turbine by taking a good look at its performance and possibilities: 'Normally, the efficiency of a turbine is based on a period of twenty years, during which it operates at 8m. per second, but in Flevoland, for example, that rate is 6.3m. By overhauling the turbine, you make it possible for it to operate efficiently again for many more years'.
It's all about the eventual cost
And that is where Certion plays an important part. Robbertsen explains: 'With a team of five, our organisation is relatively small, and we therefore have to collaborate with fixed partners when it comes to transport and hoisting cranes, for example. When it comes to disassembly, we work with two companies, one of which is Certion; they supply the technicians and specialist equipment. For each operation, in addition to the expertise required, we also consider the partner's geographical location. Obviously, the finances matter as well, but we prefer to consider the eventual cost of a project rather than focusing on the short term'.
Certion knows the Vestas turbines
Business in Wind collaborates with big names in the industry, with partners like Engie, Eneco and Pure Energy: 'We are often entrusted with handling the entire pathway, from purchase and disassembly to transport and installation. This requires quality, certification and confidence, and we are keen to involve Certion in that chain. We have known Ronald Elkink and Bart Thiele since 2005, and they have been working at Certion for many years. Their technicians know the ins and outs of Vestas turbines, so we know they are capable of disassembling them efficiently. We can also rely on them to think about optimal solutions. Communications are excellent and it is a pleasure to work with them'.
Disassembly in the workshop
Twelve 70m Vestas turbines are currently being dismantled at a location near Swifterbant in Flevoland. A Business in Wind site manager maintains daily contact with the Certion technicians. Nine of these turbines will have a second life in Kazakhstan, but turbines can be redeployed all over Europe. The three remaining turbines are being disassembled in the nearby Certion premises, where the machine chambers will be reconditioned and stocked as spare parts.
More opportunities offshore
Says Robbertsen: 'These Certion facilities are yet another asset as far as we are concerned. I feel that these facilities offer excellent possibilities for the disassembly and reconditioning of more turbine components from abroad, and we hope that in a few years' time we will also be able to disassemble and install turbines offshore; Certion are specialists in that area too'.