Read Full Story In wind farms across North America and Europe, sleek turbines equipped with state-of-the-art technology convert wind energy into electric power. But tucked inside the blades of these feats of modern engineering is a decidedly low-tech core material: balsa wood.Like other manufactured products that use sandwich panel construction to achieve a combination of light weight and strength, turbine blades contain carefully arrayed strips of balsa wood from Ecuador, which provides 95 percent of the world’s supply.For centuries, the fast-growing balsa tree has been prized for its light weight and stiffness relative to density. But balsa wood is expensive and natural variations in the grain can be an impediment to achieving the increasingly precise performance requirements of turbine blades and other sophisticated applications.As turbine makers produce ever-larger blades—the longest now measure 75 meters, almost matching the wingspan of an Airbus A380 jetliner—they must be engineered to operate virtually maintenance-free for decades. In order to meet more demanding specifications for precision, weight, and quality consistency, manufacturers are searching for new sandwich construction material options.Now, using a cocktail of fiber-reinforced epoxy-based thermosetting resins and 3D extrusion printing techniques, materials scientists at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering have developed cellular composite materials of unprecedented light weight and stiffness. Because of their mechanical properties and the fine-scale control of fabrication (see video), the researchers say these new materials mimic and improve on balsa, and even the best commercial 3D-printed polymers and polymer composites available.
UK’s Subsea 7 has been awarded two contracts by BP for the Azeri Central East (ACE) project in the Azeri-Chirag-Deepwater Gunashli (ACG) field in the Caspian Sea offshore Azerbaijan in a water depth of approximately 140 meters.The Central Azeri PlatformSubsea 7 said on Monday that the two contracts together represent a sizable contract award, which means the value is between $50 million and $150 million.The work scopes comprise engineering and fabrication of subsea structures, engineering, transport and installation of spools, the launching of a 16,200 tonne jacket and the float-over of an 18,500 tonne topside.The company said that the contracts would be executed in consortium with BOS Shelf, which would be responsible for the fabrication, logistics and facilities support. Engineering work will start immediately from Subsea 7’s office in France and offshore execution is expected to take place in 2021 and 2022.Gilles Lafaye, Subsea 7’s Vice President Africa Region, said: “This project reflects our long-term relationship and early engagement with BP Exploration and builds on our Life of Field activities in Azerbaijan.”It is worth reminding that BP awarded key contracts for the the ACE project in the Azerbaijan’s sector of the Caspian Sea earlier in September.The consortium consisting of BOS Shelf LLC and Star Gulf FZCO was awarded a contract for the fabrication of the jacket for the ACE platform and skirt piles. The value of this contract is around $260 million. The scope of work includes shop and erection engineering, rolling of tubulars, fabrication and assembly of the jacket and skirt piles, commissioning of installation systems, load-out and sea-fastening of the facility.Spotted a typo? Have something more to add to the story? Maybe a nice photo? Contact our editorial team via email. Also, if you’re interested in showcasing your company, product or technology on Offshore Energy Today, please contact us via our advertising form where you can also see our media kit.
Liverpool have announced the addition of a friendly against Norwegian side Valerenga to their pre-season programme. The Reds will travel to Oslo for the fixture on August 7. Liverpool are already playing in Indonesia, Australia and Thailand on their pre-season tour in July and also hosting Olympiacos for Steven Gerrard’s testimonial at Anfield on August 3. Press Association
Kenpong Group of Companies president, Kennedy Agyapong (Kenpong) is calling on Asante Kotoko faithful to remain resolute behind the club despite its poor start of the league.Kotoko began the 2016/17 league campaign on a wrong footing, losing 0-2 to WAFA at Sogakope few weeks ago.The Sogakope results generated argument at the supporters’ front, with some calling for the head of the club’s General Manager, Opoku Nti.But the former board member of the Porcupine Warriors has said it is early yet to call for the chairman’s head.Speaking at the Kotoka International Airport on his way to Burkina Faso, he bemoaned how the supporters’ front has failed to support the club financially, yet expect so much from the club.To him, if the club’s teeming fans should contribute GH¢5 per month, it will help the club a great deal in many aspects. He said in an interview that “It is too early for the fans to call for Opoku Nti’s head, we just lost to WAFA, and I can say the tall injury list could be a factor for the loss.””When I was a board member, you hardly see the big men pay for matches. They always request for VIP tickets for free. We shouldn’t encourage that practice, VIP tickets should be sold””Elsewhere where football has developed, the big men pay for matches and that helps in the club’s income generation.””‘We shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that Opoku Nti is not on his own, he operates on the instructions of the board.””He has managed to buy some of the finest players in the country so let’s be patient with him. I heard from some quarters that Opoku is not a businessman so he should be stripped of his post. They shouldn’t forget Nana hasn’t dissolved the Board yet. “It’s a club we all love but we shouldn’t pay lip service only, let’s all support and stop the unnecessary criticism, Nti is an honest man, having walked with him for sometime.”He added that:“I am told that those who come in the name of supporting the club end up placing interest on whatever money they inject to the team, I don’t think it is right, we shouldn’t milk the club we claim we love.”–Follow Joy Sports on Twitter: @JoySportsGH. Our hashtag is #JoySports