Portsmouth Wind Turbine Damage Report...

Portsmouth Wind Turbine Damage Report - Where Is It !

Posted in the Portsmouth Forum

Bill Carson

Mattapoisett, MA

#1 Sep 13, 2012
Portsmouth Wind Turbine Fiasco

The issue of the commercial wind generator fiasco in Portsmouth ,Rhode Island should concern all citizens.

A full and open public discussion and disclosure of the entire proposals and breakdown is needed. There are many rumors floating around. We've heard varying estimates of how much money the repairs will cost.

In August it was announced that an expert engineer from Seattle ,Washington was in the process of evaluating the damage to the wind turbine. The expert spent the last week of August looking at the gearbox and associated worn parts from the three year old wind turbine.

The engineer was recommended to the town by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory .The NREL is a federal agency dedicated to the research, development, commercialization and deployment of renewable energy which for the most part represent commercial wind turbines.

The town has given information about the wind turbine to the expert engineer that includes the number of times the turbine had been reset and restarted as many as every 6 to 8 hours a day over a long period of time. The maintenance company was only called a few times because local town officials felt it would cause too much down time to look for problems.

Where is the written report ? Three weeks have elapsed since the review of the turbine. Did pushing the reset button off and on several times a day ruin the turbine ? This brings into question the ability of a municipality to manage a single wind turbine .

Today there is NO agenda on the Portsmouth Town Council Meeting schedule for a distribution of the wind turbine damage report to members of the town council !

The Town of Portsmouth has given out the information to an engineer at no cost to the town .The least that can be done is make the written report open to the public . How much damage was done to the turbine by pushing the restart button over and over for days and months and never calling the maintenance company ?

This turbine was being shut down by an oil sensor switch that detects microns of metal in gearbox oil. The oil sensor switch was blamed along with the company that built the turbine .

I'd like to know if human error was the real blame overlooking the oil sensor shut downs in order to get a higher percentage of output from the turbine . Portsmouth officials had been bragging about the turbine and showing off the production of the turbine to cities and towns all over New England .

The town even organized tours to come and look at the turbine !

It's time to hear the truth !

See Town Administrator's Report about 21 minutes into the video:


5. Wind Turbine Update
Bill Carson

Mattapoisett, MA

#2 Sep 13, 2012

filed: October 29, 2010 • Rhode Island
Portsmouth turbine stops turning
Credit: By Bruce Burdett, www.eastbayri.com 28 October 2010 ~~

PORTSMOUTH — It blew a steady 20 m.p.h. from the west Friday but the blades on Portsmouth’s wind turbine didn’t budge.

“Yes,” replied Gary Crosby, Portsmouth’s town planner, when asked whether the turbine is broken.“We’re going through a bit of a rough patch but hope to have it resolved soon.”

The problem seems to be a relay switch which has been repeatedly switching off for reasons unknown, said Mr. Crosby who has overseen the town’s wind turbine project.

“For awhile I was able to go over there myself and physically switch it back on,” he said, but as of the middle of last week, even that didn’t work.“Now I can’t reset it at all,” he said Friday.

The situation is complicated by the bankruptcy earlier this year of AAER, the Canadian firm that supplied the wind turbine to Portsmouth and provided the warranty protection.

When AAER was still afloat, technicians there could monitor the turbine remotely and make any needed adjustments, usually without even visiting the site.

But Mr. Crosby said those duties have temporarily fallen to him while the new service provider, Lumus Construction of Woburn, Mass., gets up to speed. The Town Council voted September 15 to hire Lumus at an annual rate of $33,000 with additional fees for extra work

But before it can work on the turbine, Lumus must first be licensed by Wind Tech International, the company that built the turbine. Mr. Crosby said that that process is under way but he’s not sure when it will be done.

That left Mr. Crosby to run over to the turbine every time it shut down, which had been happening as frequently as every six to eight hours.

“I can see it from my house, between a couple of trees and I was going over constantly days, weekends, holidays.” He could hit the reset buttons from within the control room at the base of the tower — but as of Friday that process no longer worked.

“It’s wearing on me to lose days with good breezes. I would love to see it turning … But overall this has been a very good machine, very reliable,” Mr. Crosby said. In fact, as recently as the 18th of October, the turbine’s output was “22 percent ahead of monthly projections so we have a cushion.”

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