Swedish wood technology company, Modvion, and the Finnish wood product company, Metsä Wood, have agreed to supply laminated veneer lumber (LVL) for Modvion’s wooden wind turbine towers.
“Building renewable energy with renewable materials can enable net-zero energy production from wind,” said Pär Hallgren, Head of Procurement at Modvion. “Metsä Wood is an important partner in our journey to become a leading supplier of the next generation of sustainable wind turbine towers, which will also make us potentially one of the largest buyers of LVL.”
Modvion builds modular wind turbine towers using laminated veneer lumber (LVL), where Metsä Wood is a key supplier to Modvion. The material is essential for the design as its strength-to-weight ratio results in lighter towers with less need for expensive reinforcements.
“Kerto® LVL enables high material efficiency thus making it ideal for sustainable construction. Modvion’s design and application is a great example of its versatility,” says Henrik Söderström, SVP, Sales and Marketing at Metsä Wood.
Alongside the technical benefits of LVL, it also enables for radical reductions in emissions. According to a lifecycle analysis conducted by the Swedish research institute RISE, a wooden wind turbine tower reduces emissions by 90% when compared to a steel tower of the same height and load. Considering that wood is also storing carbon, the tower becomes carbon negative, since it is binding more CO2 than it emits during manufacturing. To ensure maximum carbon storage, Modvion plans to reuse the wood material after the wind turbine tower is decommissioned.
“The volumes of wood needed for a Modvion tower is between 300 – 1200 cubic meters depending on the height and load. That means an LVL carbon storage capacity between 240 – 950 tonnes CO2eq per tower,” said Pär Hallgren.
Modvion’s next milestone is building their first commercial wind turbine tower during 2023. The wooden tower will be installed with a 2-megawatt wind turbine on top and stand at 150m total height, including the blades. Metsä Wood is the supplier of the LVL for this innovative project.