Wind turbines as a re-use object
Wind energy is one of the most powerful and future-oriented renewable energies. As long
as we use the maximum capacity of the wind turbines. But how? It is clear that the
actual service life of each wind turbine must be fully exploited. The keyword is:
sustainability! In so many areas, people are realizing the benefit of reusing and
recycling. The "throwaway society" is changing to a "re-use society." Clothes,
furniture, cars or other items change hands and are used multiple times. One person
wants something new, the other is happy about the used, cheaper item. This trend can be
transferred to many areas, including environmental protection, the energy turnaround and
ultimately also wind turbines: "Re-Power" is the objective here.
Germany is already well on the way to using renewable energies. By 2030, the share of
green electricity should already be 65%. To achieve this goal, however, the expansion of
plant capacities must not be allowed to falter.
A major issue with wind energy is the availability of vacant land for large onshore
turbines. Currently, there are hardly any free areas that could be used for a wind farm.
In addition, the end of the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG for short) subsidy for
wind turbines, which comes into effect after 20 years, makes it difficult to operate
wind projects profitably. The future of the subsidized plants (approx. 25% of the
current stock until 2025) has been uncertain so far: The research project "Tailwind"
starts exactly there!
The challenge of enabling the depleted plants to operate for further years is being taken
up by the "Tailwind" project. A digital B2B platform business model is to be launched on
The vision of the tailwind project
The project "Tailwind" creates a new platform that brings together existing plant
operators from Germany as well as foreign operators and project developers to jointly
initiate wind projects.
Who is this innovative concept for continued operation aimed at? To operators in Germany
who make their turbines available and want to continue to generate revenue by operating
these wind turbines abroad for several years in the future. In addition, new operators
abroad who, without this research project, would find it difficult to afford wind
turbines and who are introduced to the market through the support of a German service
company. This is an innovative concept for continued operation that has not existed
before. Innovative power creates wind power! This is how "Made in Germany" becomes
"Operated by Germany".
For all three partners, the operator from Germany, its service company and the new
operator abroad, attractive synergies are created for the expansion of renewable
energies. The old plant operators will continue to participate in the electricity yield
through the "pay-per-kWh" principle. Thanks to the attractive feed-in tariff in the
respective country, they receive a corresponding payment for every kWh produced by their
old plant. The new operators draw on the know-how of their German business partners. The
service companies and manufacturers, who also come from Germany, gain more
cost-effective access to the international growth market. In addition, the goal of the
project is recycling. And this according to the standards valid in Germany in order to
establish proper dismantling.
Illustration 1: The funcitionality of the "tailwind" project
Who is behind the project?
The overall package and responsibility for the "Tailwind" project is borne by the company
WIV GmbH from Gelnhausen, which has been operating wind-turbine.com, the world's largest
B2B online platform for the wind industry, since 2012. Currently, this platform is being
further developed with additional features in the co-working space "KINZIG.VALLEY" in
Founder of the platform www.wind-turbine.com
and Managing Director of WIV GmbH Bernd
Weidmann: "We don't have much time left! Innovative ideas and pragmatic approaches
are needed now to manage the global energy transition. It simply has to happen
faster and we are very motivated to actively make our contribution with our partners
In cooperation with the "Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences" and the IT company
let's dev GmbH & Co. KG (technical implementation), the innovative platform business
model is being developed.
Prof. Dr. Carsten Hahn, Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences (XLAB) and partner in
the research project is enthusiastic: "We at Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences
are very pleased to be developing an innovative platform business model for the wind
industry in the Tailwind project. This is because the Tailwind project not only
offers us a real use case with competent partners, but also enables us to make our
contribution to the energy transition."
Managing Director Dr. Karl-J. Wack (let's dev GmbH & Co. KG) also adds: "The energy
turnaround is a key aspect in shaping the future in a safe, environmentally
compatible and economical way. With the Tailwind project, we are closing an
essential gap in the re-use of wind turbines, contributing to the energy transition
and promoting sustainability."
The German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy supports and finances the
"Tailwind" with the "Innovation Program for Business Models and Pioneer Solutions"