Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Windmill Fundamentals new Research

Maine Research
Maine has started some interesting research into floating windmills. These will be placed 20 miles off shore. So one of the MIT premises is wrong–we are not limited to the land surface. They claim there is enough wind off Maine to power the USE 4 times over.
Habib Dagher, director of the University of Maine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center, left, shows U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Sen. Susan Collins a scale model of a floating wind turbine in Orono. A $3 million federal grant will be used for a component lab that will build prototype blades, towers and hulls for floating windmills.
Habib Dagher of the Advanced Structures and Composites Center said the center will use the money for a lab station, or “cell,” where prototype blades and towers will be made out of experimental materials to withstand off-shore stresses.
“This is a cornerstone function of the lab,” Dagher said.
He said “a very large robot” that can weld, paint and perform other mechanical work will be used in building the windmill parts. Shaped like a large, inverted “U,” the robot will travel up and down a 200-foot track to apply composite fabrics to the parts.
The center, at the Orono campus, was expanded to include the Offshore Wind Laboratory. The lab formally opens in November to advance the work designing, building and testing deepwater, wind-generating technology, in which the center has attained a national leadership role.
The center has six components in various stages of completion. They include structural testing; a 12-foot-deep hydrodynamic pool where wind and wave action is replicated; and a section where blades are subjected to the kinds of wear and tear they would have to endure off the coast.