State’s tallest wind turbines to begin operating near Green Bay

Posted on November 10, 2010. Filed under: Economic development, Wind | Tags: , , |

From an article by Tom Content in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

Project has only 8 turbines, but height adds to energy output
Glenmore — Towering above farm fields on the Niagara Escarpment south of Green Bay are some of the tallest wind turbines in the nation – rising nearly 500 feet from the ground to the tip of a blade, only about 100 feet shorter than Wisconsin’s highest skyscraper, the U.S. Bank building in Milwaukee.

The Shirley Wind project is small by another measure, numbering only eight turbines, compared with the 90 turbines We Energies is building at the Glacier Hills Wind Park north of Madison. But the turbines that will start producing power this month in Glenmore can each generate more power than any other wind turbine erected so far in the state.

The Shirley Wind turbines are 100 feet taller than the turbines We Energies is building at Glacier Hills.

Shirley Wind’s project developers, though, are quick to point out that their turbines are less than half the size of some nearby cell phone towers, which rise up to 1,200 feet.

The turbines are being tested this week and will soon start producing electricity, said Bill Rakocy, of project developer Emerging Energies in Hubertus.

Several Wisconsin companies contributed to the effort, including Tower Tech of Manitowoc and Michels Wind Energy of Brownsville. Tower Tech said the towers, made in Manitowoc, are the largest it has ever built. A large crane from Manitowoc Cranes helped erect the towers.

“I can’t tell you how exciting it has been to watch this go up, and to feel and touch the turbines, and know that it’s Wisconsin through and through,” Rakocy said. “Our whole focus has been to do something that is good for Wisconsin and to focus on Wisconsin jobs.”

The project will supply power to Wisconsin Public Service Corp. of Green Bay, which in turn will sell energy credits to the state government to help it reach its goal of getting 20% of its electricity from renewable sources. Dave Helbach of the state Department of Administration said it will help increase the state government’s renewable-power purchases to 16% of the electricity it buys.

Each turbine generates about 2.5 megawatts of electricity. That is about four times as much as the first two utility-scale turbines that opened in Glenmore 12 years ago at an Earth Day ceremony presided over by then-Gov. Tommy Thompson.


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