Workers recently used recycled wind-turbine blades to install a pedestrian bridge on a former train-track bed in County Cork, Ireland. This makes it the second “blade bridge” in the world. Engineers installed one in western Poland in October 2021.
Engineers believe bridges like these are an ideal way to repurpose old wind-turbine blades, which average over 150 feet in length and weigh more than a dozen tons each. Using blades for infrastructure projects keeps them out of landfills, where they take up huge amounts of space and don’t break down easily, and saves the energy required to make new construction materials.
According to a product developer, wind-turbine blades often have decades of life left in them after being decommissioned and their material properties make them attractive as engineering support structures.