Library filed under Structural Failure from Minnesota
Both turbines have the same problem with the high-voltage switch at the base of each tower. ...In mid-September, the utility sent a letter to DeWind requesting $254,354 in warranty payments for three years of lost electrical production due to breakdowns and repairs.
Wind farm technicians and officials with EDF Renewable Energy believe one wind tower, just northeast of Dexter, was struck by lightning on April 24, which mangled one of the structure's 37-meter, 14,000-pound blades.
"We're seeing some steel quality issues in the gearboxes that we have. They're just not holding up as long as they should." Of the 67 General Electric 1.5 megawatt turbines near Dexter, 46 were classified as follows: • 32 were dubbed "unusual/monitor." • 12 were noted "abnormal/repair expected eventually." • Two were called "abnormal/repair required."
Lightning hit one of the blades of the turbine, sending part of it to the ground. The fire continued to burn, both at the base and at the top of the 175-foot-tall tower. Ultimately, all three blades were destroyed.
Severe thunderstorm damaged at least six wind turbines at the Lake Benton wind facility in Lincoln County, Minnesota.
Two workers were injured this morning while constructing a tower for a wind turbine on a private property in rural southwest Rochester, according to the Rochester Fire Department. The two were evacuated from the accident by medical helicopter.
In Minnesota, the wind is blowing but turbines aren't turning. The machines, bought used from California and installed last fall, are completely frozen in place. Even on the windiest days, the blades sit at a standstill, producing no power. Why should anyone care? The problem highlights some of the less intuitive challenges associated with wind power - long considered to be the most feasible and cost effective source of renewable energy.
Last year, about a dozen Minnesota communities dreamed of clean, green energy: spinning windmills powering hundreds of homes. Now, months after the deadline, the windmills stand largely immobile, and communities are still waiting for the power to flow. Eleven cities, including North St. Paul and Anoka, are participating in the wind turbine project, each getting a 115-foot windmill via the Minnesota Municipal Power Association, or MMPA.
With their organic gardens and ample land, Andy and Jessie Welsh had the perfect plan. Living in rural Stearns County, the young couple had hoped to be energy self-sufficient and green. ...From the start, the installation was delayed and marked by setbacks. Electricians had a hard time getting the turbine wired to run properly. When it finally did, the turbine ran for just a few days before they received a call from the company instructing them to shut it down.
He said that people don't realize that a wind farm is constant maintenance, and to ensure longevity, preventative maintenance is needed. ..."Wind energy is not the complete answer to our energy needs," McNeilus said. "It is a piece of the pie, but you still have to have the whole pie, because there are days when the wind doesn't blow."
The 10 wind turbines at the Taconite Ridge wind farm will probably still be motionless until early February, a company spokesperson said Thursday. Nine of the ten wind turbines now are having repairs done to blades, instead of just five, that was reported earlier. The completion date for repairs has been pushed back from mid-January, said Amy Rutledge, Minnesota Power communications manager.
When it came time to start repairing a wind turbine at the ethanol plant on Oct. 15, the project had to be put on hold. ..."The blade has been cracked all summer. It's been frustrating," says Dan Moore, director of project development for Renewable Energy Solutions. When the broken blade was discovered, the turbine furthest from the ethanol plant had to be shut down. All three blades needed to be replaced, says Moore, because we couldn't find one to match the other two.
It's not just a lack of wind as the reason why some of those wind turbines in the Taconite Ridge wind farm aren't turning. Half of the 10 machines had to be turned off. After a recent routine maintenance check, it was found that five of them had non-structural defects in some of the blades. The affected turbines were shut down and are awaiting repairs, which are expected to go through the end of the year, Amy Rutledge, Minnesota Power communications manager, said Friday.