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Wind Turbine Provides Research Opportunities for Faculty and Students

In October, a fence went up on the Case campus between the Bingham Building and the Veale parking garage. In just over a month, construction processes were completed and an operational wind turbine now stands on the site, supplying power to the Veale Center and supplying research opportunities to the Case School of Engineering, making Case the first university with a wind turbine dedicated to research.

The 156-foot tall turbine was funded by the state government as well as several manufacturers around the state and is the first of a series of three turbines to be installed in the Cleveland area. The following turbines will be larger and the next is slated for completion in June, situated along I-90 in Euclid. (full article)

Professor Art Huckelbridge has been the Civil Engineering Department’s lead researcher involved with the project. Along with Masters Student Nissar Suhail and undergraduate Anna Kennedy, Dr. Huckelbridge has installed instrumentation in the foundation and tower. This instrumentation will be monitored for at least one to two years in an attempt to better quantify the overturning moments and shear forces applied to the base of the tower from the wind.

Ultimately, the researchers hope to better understand and model the appropriate design loads for these structures are and, if necessary, to be able to contribute to the modification of the design standards. As the limits of engineering continue to be pushed, “there is a need to understand,” according to Dr. Huckelbridge, “especially offshore, when you can’t get out to fix it – you need to make sure you did your best job initially.”

A video and pictures of the installation are also available.