A Scottish product design company is now offering its services to the renewable energy sector

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In the UK, the renewable energy sector is big business: a great deal of money is being ploughed into the construction of both onshore and offshore wind farms not to mention the development of wave and tidal devices to be deployed off our coasts.

In fact, according to RenewableUK, the trade body for the UK wind and marine renewables industries, 2009 saw the total of wind energy projects with planning approvals rise to 7.3GW, taking the total of homes powered by wind within the next few years to over five million. The sector also has full support from our new government as Chris Huhne, the new energy secretary, has recently been quoted as saying: “My in tray is heavy with two massive responsibilities – cutting dangerous carbon emissions and ensuring secure and reliable energy supplies.”

As this is an industry that relies heavily on innovation to drive it forward i4 Product Design, a product development company based in Edinburgh, has announced that it will be offering its product development services to European companies operating in renewable energy. “We have a highly creative, talented and innovative team with over 120 years mechanical and industrial design experience between us. The same core skills that we use to develop consumer, medical and communications products can be easily adapted to projects we undertake for the renewable energy sector,” says i4’s managing director Brian Combe.

i4 have already secured a contract with an international wind turbine company to design and supply two product solutions and so far have come up with the conceptual designs, created detailed engineering design and also managed the logistics of manufacture and product supply. “One particular solution involved retrofitting our kits to turbines that were experiencing a cable insulation wear issue at the entry of the pipe at the yaw room platform. The solution saved our client somewhere in the region of £50,000 per turbine in downtime and cable replacement costs,” comments Combe.

But for him, its not just about creating design solutions for maintenance and operating issues as i4 also want to address Health and Safety aspects too. “The same client we have been working with is experiencing three Health and Safety issues. We have provided three conceptual design solutions and are now waiting to find out whether we can proceed to detailed design and manufacture,” adds Combe.


To celebrate launching into this burgeoning industry and to help other companies looking for assistance with their product development needs, i4 is offering interested companies one free half day consultation up until 30 September 2010. For anyone who is interested please email {encode=”bcombe@i4productdesign.co.uk” title=”Brian Combe”}.

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