Mass engineered timber is taking on other tall towers besides making beautiful buildings. Danish wind energy giant Vestas has boosted its investment in Swedish wood technology company Modvion, which specialises in making wooden wind turbine towers that it claims are “stronger than steel”.
Modvion uses laminated veneer lumber (LVL), a bio-composite material, to build turbine towers that can be taller than existing towers because, according to Modvion CEO Otto Lundman, they are “stronger than steel at the same weight” and can be built in modules.
Modvion says its towers present the opportunity of reducing carbon emissions through the turbine tower’s value chain by as much as 80%. Because LVL towers are stronger than steel but lighter, that also means there are cost reductions to be found in wind turbine builds.