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The Klondike Wind Power projects, located east of Wasco, Ore., is hosting next-generation turbine technology designed to make wind power generation more efficient, safe and weather-resistant, according to the project developer Iberdrola Renewables.

The Klondike III project is the North American test site for the flagship Mitsubishi 2.4 MW, 92-meter rotor wind turbine, manufactured in Japan. The turbine is designed for ease of transport, capability to assemble using smaller cranes than are normally used for other turbines its size, and superior performance and resistance to storm winds and lightning strikes.

The earlier Klondike II project has been the U.S. test site for the prototype XLE wind turbine, debuting an 82-meter rotor coupled with the GE Energy 1.5 MW turbine platform. Klondike II is also the favored testing ground for other enhancements, such as advanced gearbox conditioning monitoring, new oil filtration devices and systems to allow technicians to climb towers more safely and with less effort.

"Iberdrola Renewables and the Klondike team are honored to be a test and showcase site for the advanced GE equipment and Mitsubishi's flagship unit in the United States," says Harm Toren, head of operations services for Iberdrola Renewables, based in Portland, Ore. "Mitsubishi could have tested that unit at any wind farm, but the consistent winds of the central gorge and the reputation of the Klondike crew made this the ideal place to test the Mitsubishi turbine. They knew they were testing the machine, not the weather or the operations staff."

One of the key safety features of the Mitsubishi turbine is called smart yaw, which, when certain conditions are present, rotates the machine in a reverse configuration so the machine acts in a weather-vane pattern during high wind speeds and changing wind directions. This lightens the wind load on the turbine so that it can cope with higher forces, even as high as a storm blowing at 156 miles per hour. At the low end, the turbine can generate electricity in winds as light as six miles per hour.

SOURCE: Iberdrola Renewables

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