Vestas break US record with longest blade transport by rail
Rail for the W

Vestas break US record with longest blade transport by rail

Photo Vestas

Vestas marked a couple of milestones in the United States by moving the first high-capacity factor V163-4.5 MW wind turbine blades manufactured at the Windsor Blades factory in Colorado by rail. Making the transport even more impressive is the size of the blades measuring 80.5 metres. 

As Vestas claims, these were the longest wind turbine blades transported across major rail service networks in the United States. The transport has been completed in partnership with OmniTRAX, BNSF Railway and Union Pacific Railroad.

OmniTRAX added that it partnered Vestas for this shipment at the origination and the destination. Great Western Railway (GWR) kicked the transport off in Windsor, CO, and the shipment terminated at the company’s Brownsville & Rio Grande International Railway (BRG) at the Port of Brownsville, Texas.

Vestas break US record with longest blade transport by rail
Photo: Vestas

Furthermore, in one of the comments on Vestas’ social media posts, Brian Thomas, VP of Business Development at Barnhart Energy Company said that Barnhart Crane & Rigging’s first turbine erection project was for Vestas in Evanston WY in 2003 when the company railed the V80 blades to site. For reference, the V80 blades have a length of 39 metres.

The V163-4.5 MW turbine reached more than 5 GW of firm orders globally in 2023, including the company’s record 1.1 GW SunZia order in the US. The turbine’s superior park performance significantly enhances business case certainty and has been key to establishing it as the preferred choice for renewable energy projects worldwide, Vestas said.

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Author: Adnan Bajic

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Vestas break US record with longest blade transport by rail