New wind turbine in Newport

By Keith Boles - bio | email feedback

NEWPORT, AR (KAIT) - It was a windy day here in Region 8. Perfect for wind turbines.

Not the huge semi-sized turbines that will be made in Jonesboro by Nordex but on a smaller technological scale.

Along side Highway 67 outside Newport the Endurance S-343 wind turbine blades spin in the brisk North wind.

Rick Bormann, GREENway Renewable Energy Senior Vice President says using power generated by one of these turbines and feeding into a grid is like making your meter run backwards.

"Some months you might generate more than you need, some months you won't generate as much as you need. But yet it's a net credit that's zeroed out at the end of the year. It's pumping energy into the grid that Entergy then turns around and sells to consumers."

In fact it's the only one like it in the state that's feeding into a power grid.

Unlike the monsters that Nordex is going to build. This turbine is designed for small winds.

The blades are only 9 feet long, it's big brother has blades that are 29 feet long. Both will spin in relative low wind speeds.

These will spin with wind speeds as low as 6.5 miles per hour. Average wind speeds around here range from 10 to 14 miles per hour.

This small turbine will cost in the area of 40 Thousand dollars. But with federal tax credits and accelerated depreciation available the turbine could be paid off in around 4 years.

Bormann told me their company is committed to long term wind turbine technology.

"We think this along with solar energy are sources that are going to be fully developed in the future."

And Bormann says these machines should see long years of service.

"So when ever you put one up you're gonna be looking at generating electricity for over 30 years. "

This turbine was only placed into service last Friday so it's really to early to see what kind of numbers it's generating.

Bormann says they are looking at having an open house after the turbine has been on line for a month or so.

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