The enormous challenges facing wind turbine manufacturers and operators include delivering higher performance on a permanent basis within exactly the same installation space, while simultaneously extending the lifetimes of existing wind farms, improving the carbon footprint and ultimately reducing electricity generation costs.
Schaeffler’s solutions include series-ready hydro-dynamic plain bearings for planetary gears’ the compact and safe operation of adjusted bearings with PREMESY; and split asymmetric spherical roller bearings that offer economical operation after a change of bearings.
Of course, wind energy is second only to hydroelectric power as one of the most climate-friendly energy production technologies. However, emissions in the upstream chain are also considered, such as in the production and processing of steel to manufacture the various components of a wind turbine. In order to significantly reduce the carbon footprint of roller bearings, Schaeffler implements CO2 savings potentials across the entire value chain, from the procurement of the steel, through the manufacturing process, to the logistics and packing.
Since 2021, Schaeffler has added its own hydrogen unit to its service offer. Together with the wind power sector, this works on new, integrated solutions that support the achievement of Schaeffler's sustainability targets. Among other developments, an electrolyser to produce green hydrogen is scheduled to start operation at the Schweinfurt plant.
Stacks, the key components of these electrolysers, form part of the Schaeffler product portfolio. The Schaeffler K-Series Hydron Power Stack will have an application range of 1 to 1000 kilowatts. It will be designed and produced at Schaeffler sites in Europe, according to the highest quality standards. Electrolysers can also be installed locally as modular systems. This makes it possible, for example, to link them with individual wind turbines.