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The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with six wind industry turbine manufacturers: GE Energy, Siemens Power Generation, Vestas Wind Systems, Clipper Turbine Works, Suzlon Energy and Gamesa Corp. The two-year collaboration is designed to promote wind energy in the U.S. through advanced technology research and development, and siting strategies aimed to advance industrial wind power manufacturing capabilities.

"The MOU between DOE and the six major turbine manufacturers demonstrates the shared commitment of the federal government and the private sector to create the road map necessary to achieve 20-percent wind energy by 2030," says DOE Assistant Secretary Andy Karsner. "To dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and enhance our energy security, clean power generation at the gigawatt-scale will be necessary to expand the domestic wind manufacturing base and streamline the permitting process."

Under the MOU, DOE and the six turbine manufacturers will collaborate to gather and exchange information to define specific needs for achieving 20% percent wind energy by 2030. The MOU addresses the following areas:

- turbine reliability and operability research & development to create more reliable components, improve turbine capacity factors, and reduce installation and operations and maintenance costs,

- siting strategies to address environmental and technical issues like radar interference in a standardized framework based on industry best practices,

- standards development for turbine certification and universal generator interconnection,

- manufacturing advances in design, process automation and fabrication techniques to reduce product-to-product variability and premature failure while increasing the domestic manufacturing base, and

- workforce development including the development, standardization and certification of wind energy curricula for mechanical and power systems engineers and community college training programs.

SOURCE: Department of Energy

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