The production of energy in wind power plants is regarded as ecologically clean because there being no direct emissions of harmful substances during the conversion of wind energy into electricity. The production and operation of wind power plant components make use of the significant potential of materials such as steel, plastics, concrete, oils, and greases. Energy is also used, which is a source of potential negative environmental impacts. Servicing a wind farm power plant during its operational years, which lasts most often 25 years, followed by its disassembly, involves energy expenditures as well as the recovery of post-construction material potential. There is little research in the world literature on models and methodologies addressing analyses of the environmental and energy aspects of wind turbine modernization, whether in reference to turbines within their respective lifecycles or to those which have already completed them. The paper presents an attempt to solve the problems of wind turbine modernization in terms of balancing energy and material potentials. The aim of sustainable modernization is to overhaul: assemblies, components, and elements of wind power plants to extend selected phases as well as the lifecycle thereof while maintaining a high quality of power and energy; high energy, environmental, and economic efficiency; and low harmfulness to operators, operational functions, the environment, and other technical systems. The aim of the study is to develop a methodology to assess the efficiency of energy and environmental costs incurred during the 25-year lifecycle of a 2 MW wind power plant and of the very same power plant undergoing sustainable modernization to extend its lifecycle to 50 years. The analytical and research procedure conducted is a new model and methodological approach, one which is a valuable source of data for the sustainable lifecycle management of wind power plants in an economy focused on process efficiency and the sustainability of energy and material resources.
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