Maersk Training has launched a ground breaking new training course designed specifically at supporting the creation of a global workforce of competent rotorblade technicians.
Developed with support from wind industry technical experts 8.2 Aarufield, Maersk Training has launched a ground breaking new training course designed specifically at supporting the creation of a global workforce of competent rotorblade technicians.
The first of its type to be offered in the UK, the Competent Rotorblade Technician course is intended to help greatly increase the number of skilled technicians around the world who can competently inspect, assess and repair wind turbine rotorblade damage which in turn supports the ongoing drive to achieve wind energy cost reductions through energy yield improvements.
Prepares Delegates for Working in the Field
Using inputs from multiple wind turbine blade types, manufacturing technologies and the principles of industry standard DNVGL-ST-0376 (Rotor Blades for Wind Turbines) as a baseline for the repair techniques taught, the Competent Rotorblade Technician course prepares aspiring rotorblade technicians for work in the field to a far higher standard than was previously possible by the available awareness or basic level courses.
The ten day course is an intensive and very hands on programme aimed at taking an individual with no prior experience of wind turbine rotor blades up to the level at which they will be a competent entry level rotorblade technician able to work alongside and support an experienced technician to a high standard of quality and safety. The course is roughly 30% theory and 70% hands-on practical and includes sessions in state of the art, purpose built facilities including a wind composites and coatings training lab, a rotorblade repair workshop with numerous blade sections and suspended blades where delegates can experience the challenges of rope access and learn in a controlled environment how to apply inspection and repair skills using this access technique.
Market Leading Development
When asked why the course was developed Stuart Cameron, Managing Director of Maersk Training in Newcastle said:
“As a former member of Renewable UK’s RTN training review panel, Maersk Training was heavily involved in development of the RTN Blade Repair and Inspection (BRAI) course. We saw the opportunity to lead the market in taking the next steps to help prepare a new generation of competent rotorblade technicians. We took the decision to develop our own in-house programme and contacted 8.2 Aarufield to ask if they would work with us to provide technical insights. This new course sets an industry standard for rotorblade inspection and repair training and provides course participants with a thorough understanding of rotorblade composites and prepares them for the types of working conditions and environments they are likely to find themselves in when operating in the field. They accepted the challenge and appointed Director, Andrew Bellamy to support the project. No stranger to wind turbine rotor blades, prior to forming 8.2 Aarufield with Renewable UK Chairman Julian Brown, Andrew led development of offshore rotor blades for a major OEM, and currently provides blade fleet management support to a number of major wind parks.”
Input from Multiple Blade Types and Technologies
When asked for his view on why this course was needed, Andrew said “It is clear in the wind industry that blades are a key component where ongoing maintenance and repair are essential to ensuring turbine efficiency and performance. As the number of machines installed has increased, we’ve seen a delay in the growth of the maintenance and repair workforce, which is now recognised in the industry as a serious pinch point. Maersk Training are bringing together an incredible track record in training with a new facility purposely established to give specific training in wind composites, rotorblade technology as well as inspection, assessment and repair methods.”
Bellamy goes on to say “As the industry has developed, there are some specific training certificates which have become the “norm” for blade repair. These are typically driven by a single blade manufacturer and whilst providing information specific to their technology, tend not to bring in an “overall” knowledge of different blade types, manufacturing techniques and formats. The Maersk Training Competent Rotorblade Technician course is configured to give knowledge in multiple blade types, multiple technologies and materials to give the graduates the opportunity to move into the sector in multiple roles and disciplines across a number of potential employers. The course includes processing and repair with both styrene-based and Epoxy resin systems, and incorporates processing methods including wet lamination and resin infusion.
The course also brings the expert knowledge of key industry materials suppliers who have put their backing behind it and the capabilities of Maersk Training.”
Globally Unique Career Transition Solution
Maersk Training offer the Competent Rotorblade Technician course as a standalone ten day programme or, for individuals from outside of the sector wishing to build a new career, it can form part of a bundled career transition solution being integrated with the five GWO Basic Safety Training elements, IRATA Level 1 (rope access technician), Confined Space training, Slinger Banksman, Offshore Medical as well as comprehensive information, advice and guidance (IAG) sessions including market mapping, personal brand building and employer introductions