Owens installing wind turbine at Findlay campusWritten by Duane Ramsey | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Owens Community College is expanding its use of renewable energy sources with plans to install the first wind turbine on its Findlay campus in June.
The college’s latest wind turbine will be located adjacent to the Community Education and Wellness Center on that campus. Owens already operates two wind turbines at its Toledo area campus.
The wind turbine installation will be used for educational purposes in the wind installation program and for future academic curriculum in the School of Technology.
“The new wind turbine on the Findlay area campus will play an important role in affording students the opportunity to receive hands-on learning at the highest level,” said Michael Bankey, vice president of Workforce and Community Services at Owens.
“The use of wind power is growing nationally as it has become a more viable option for commercial and residential consumption. Owens is committed to providing residents with leading edge academic resources and programming within the growing field of alternative and renewable energy,” Bankey said.
The 33-foot Skystream wind turbine is a fully integrated, utility-connected wind generator designed for residences and small businesses. Owens operates an identical wind turbine and a 120-foot EW50 wind turbine on its Toledo campus.
In addition to its instructional utilization, the 2.4-kilowatt wind turbine will be used to convert wind power into electricity for use in the Community Education and Wellness Center.
Bankey said Owens plans to offer its initial academic courses in the wind installation program to area residents in the near future. Program participants will receive instruction in the areas of installation, operation and maintenance of wind turbines.
Hands-on applications will include studying the design and installation of the wind turbine in Findlay. Practices related to installation safety, basics of electricity, interconnection with the utility, load management, wind measurement and system terminology will be included in the program.
Superior Energy Solutions LLC in Ottawa will oversee the installation of the college’s new wind turbine in late June.
Greater Findlay Inc. is working with Owens to plan a formal ribbon-cutting ceremony for the wind turbine at the Findlay campus after it is installed. The public and private partnership for economic development supports the use of alternative energy in Hancock County, according to Jeremiah Gracia, vice president of business development for the organization.
“A project like this attracts attention and helps to diversify work force development in Hancock County,” Gracia said.
Owens has conducted wind turbine installation classes at the Hardin County Chamber and Business Alliance in Kenton, Ohio. There is a demand for operators and installation technicians because of two planned wind farms, as well as wind turbines at several schools in the county.
Hardin County was selected for the wind farms because it has wind, plenty of open land and is located close to utility transmission lines, said John Hohn, vice president of economic development for the Hardin County Chamber and Business Alliance.
Hardin Wind Energy LLC, an affiliate of Invenergy, plans to install a 300-megawatt wind farm across 20,000 acres of leased land in Hardin County. The farm will use 200 turbines capable of producing 1.5 megawatts each.
JW Great Lakes Wind LLC , a subsidiary of juwi Wind GmbH, plans to construct a 50-megawatt farm across 3,400 acres in Hardin County. The company intends to install 19 to 27 wind turbines capable of producing from 1.8 to 2.5 megawatts each.
The two farms will cover a total of 56 square miles or nearly 35,000 acres in six different townships, Hohn said. The projects have been approved by the Ohio Power Siting Board.
Ohio Northern University has three 400-kilowatt wind turbines installed on its campus in Ada. Upper Scioto Valley School District is operating two 100-kilowatt wind turbines.
Ada Exempted Village Schools plans to install a single 400 kilo-watt wind turbine, according to Hohn.
Two additional wind farms planned in Paulding County are pending approval of the Power Siting Board.