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Newsletter "SEI NEWS" 2013

Home > Company Information > SEI WORLD > Back number > Vol.435

[Newsletter "SEI NEWS" Vol.435]

New Field for High-Performance Prestressing Steel Wires: Offshore Wind Power Generation That Sustains Clean Energy for Tomorrow

High-performance prestressing steel wires developed by Sumitomo (SEI) Steel Wire Corp. are widely used in prestressed concrete structures such as bridge beams. These products have also been embedded into the seabed-fixed foundations of Japan's first offshore wind power generation facilities. Experimental research is ongoing at the offshore structures, consisting of a windmill and an observatory tower, to explore the external forces applied to the structures and the relationship between wind conditions and power generation to help Japan's active promotion of offshore wind power generation.

The project, under joint research of the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) and Tokyo Electric Power Co., Inc. (TEPCO), is now set to demonstrate its operability. The building of the facility was ordered by TEPCO and constructed by Kajima Corp.

The location off the coast of Choshi, Chiba Prefecture, is known as one of the severest seas with many marine accidents due to heavy oceanographic conditions there. To secure structural stability and building workability there, various innovative products and technologies have been employed in the construction. One example is Sumitomo (SEI) Steel Wire’s high-performance prestressing steel wires: epoxy-coated and filled prestressing steel strand (ECF strand)*1 and pre-grouted prestressing steel strand*2. With their excellent durability resistive to extreme corrosive conditions, along with resource- and workday-saving advantages, they are applied to the gravity-type caisson foundation in the shape of a conical flask.


Epoxy-coated and filled prestressing steel strand (ECF strand)


Pre-grouted prestressing steel strand


Offshore wind power generation has several advantages over onshore generation: more stable wind conditions, larger rotors, less concern for landscape and noise, etc. European countries are advanced in the practical use of such technology and already have many windmills for power generation. With a long coastline and huge potential, Japan is studying the active promotion of this technology as a key source of sustainable energy.

The products used this time comply with the Draft Guidelines for Design and Installation of Prestressing Concrete Using Epoxy-Coated and Filled High-Performance Wire issued by the Japan Society of Civil Engineers and further expansion of application of these products is expected.

Sumitomo (SEI) Steel Wire Corp. intends to broadly contribute to infrastructure construction in Japan and abroad, and continue to provide excellent products and services.


Caisson foundations embedded with high-performance prestressing steel products (back left: for windmill; front right: for observatory tower)


Offshore wind power generation facilities in demonstrative operation (left: observatory tower; right: windmill)


*1 Epoxy-coated and filled prestressing steel strand (ECF strand):
Corrosion-resistant prestressing steel strand consisting of wires impregnated with epoxy powder paint into spaces between the wires and covered with high-quality epoxy powder coating. It has a high anti-corrosion property compared with conventional prestressing steel strand.
*2 Pre-grouted prestressing steel strand:
Corrosion-resistant prestressing steel strand that eliminates the need for field grouting, due to sheathing and pre-grouting with post-curing resin before delivery from the factory. Its advantages include on-site labor savings, shortened construction periods, and improved reliability of prestressing cables and structures.

2013 Index
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