Mitsubishi Rayon Co Ltd and Danish firm Fiberline Composites have agreed to form a joint venture to manufacture and distribute carbon fiber composite laminates for wind turbine blades. According to Fiberline, the joint venture will offer competitive carbon fiber components to wind turbine makers through a closely integrated supply chain, which will help industry reduce the price of wind energy.
Pultruded composite laminates have become the wind industry standard for turbines, and Fiberline specializes in pultrusion.
“By combining our competences, we and Mitsubishi Rayon will together be able to provide the industry with large volumes of carbon fiber components for advanced wind turbine blades and deliver even better balance between price, quality and security of supply,” said Fiberline CEO Peter Thorning.
According to Nikkei Asian Review, Mitsubishi will invest 49 percent in the venture and Fiberline Composites will take a 51 percent interest. The venture will be established next month and headquartered in Denmark. Nikkei adds that the joint venture has set a sales goal of 10 billion yen ($98.2 million) by FY2020. The planned carbon fiber materials made in joint venture will weigh up to 20 percent less than conventional options.
Many insiders within the industry see wind energy as one of the fastest growing markets for composites. According to Lucintel’s 2016 State of the Industry Report, the total composites market in wind energy grew by 24.2 percent in 2015. Research firm Markets and Markets projects the wind turbine composite material market will be worth $5.5 Billion by 2020.