Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Down on the Wind Farm....

I thought we'd take a little field trip today! And maybe learn something about one of the alternative energies. As some of you know, HB is an electrician....not the kind that wires house though. He works on big industrial projects and right now he's working on a project that will eventually build 84 new windmills.

This project is being done about an hour and a half north of where we live, on a privately owned ranch. Here is one of the areas being prepped for seven new towers. The elevation ranges between 3500 and 5500 feet above sea level. All the roads had to be built especially for this project.

That item in the foreground is a drill used to imbed fourteen 30' long steel rods into the bedrock where they are held in place with epoxy, and anchor the windmill towers to the earth. I think this shows some of the wild beauty of this area....and also looks somewhat like a scene from a science fiction movie about another planet.

The photo above shows the first two towers at the Pine Tree Wind Farm. That is a 150 ton crane, and the parts of another windmill are all laying around waiting to be assembled.

This shows the assembly of the rotors. Each blade is 120' long and each blade weighs 12,000 lbs. The hub in the middle weighs approx. 15,000 lbs and the whole rotor assembly is approx. 50,000 lbs when put together. So these aren't the windmills you might see on your grandpa's farm!!

It takes two cranes to initially hoist the blades into place and the coordination of the lift is very tricky. This shows some of that procedure. There are actually two men on top of the tower on the left. They communicate with the crane operator with walkie talkies so they can direct the placement of the rotors. The towers are 213.3' tall. Not exactly where I'd want to be standing!!

This is a photo looking up at a completed windmill....the rotor diameter is 252.6' and when the system runs the rotor spins one revolution every two seconds. Each windmill produces 1.5 mega watts of power.

So that's where HB spends his days.


  1. Well done HB--these windfarms are the thing of the future aren't they---we have a few popping up around our area at present.

  2. People are complaining about them - but, I find them to be beautiful. It is so neat to see an area full of them. We have a few in our area too.

  3. Great images, Janet. We have lots of windfarms here in Wales and I do think that the turbines are elegant, but too many will really start to spoil our beautiful countryside. It's seen as very much only part of the solution though and other types of energy resources will always be necessary. I do hope they can one day harness wave energy - better for us as an island nation but probably not for you!

  4. what a great post and wonderful pictures....

    I have read several articles about windmills lately…
    There are so many positives and negatives things being said.
    From how they look to the noise they make….

    I am fascinated by them and happy to see that something is finally being done..


  5. They do look very 'other worldly' - I think about that, very time I see the 'wind farm' out past Cabazon - it's like driving through an alien landscape, lol. Cool images, Janet!

  6. Oops - that was s'posed to be 'every time,' not 'very'!

  7. I rather like these. Much better than looking at hydro pylons. We saw these dotted across the mountain tops when we visited Spain last year, & they have them all over Europe.

  8. Girl, you need to join Blog Around The World and give us tours!

  9. Wow! That is so cool Janet. I always see the windmills when we go to Ca on i10. We call them the tribute to Mercedes Benz!:-)
    I'm all for wind energy!

  10. I love those things! When we drove from L.A. to Palm Springs in the spring, we saw literally hundreds of them. They are fascinating to me. Why not wind? It is always there, and would lessen dependance on other sources of energy.
    Great post and great photos Janet!!!!

  11. I think these would be much better for the environment than burning coal. I've never seen one in person but I imagine it would feel like you were in a sci-fi movie. Great pics, Janet!

  12. Bravo for HB working on sustainable energy!!! I'd love to get a windmill up on top of our ridge - I bet we'd get enough wind to supply our needs.
    And it couldn't be any noisier than the coal train that runs through several times a day, or the blasting from the mine site we can see from our deck.

  13. Do you remember windmills of the past, I always loved seeing them on a old farm as we would drive through the valleys of California.
    Janet,your pictures are beautiful...good job HB....I think this is wonderful. We have alot of wind in Ole Idaho, I hope they are building them here somewhere, I haven't any knowledge of them here yet.
    Blowing a kiss, Mary

  14. We have a wind farm here, there was a lot of hoo ha about them but they only take up a little of our coast and do a fantastic job. Thanks for sharing.

  15. Anonymous12:26 PM

    So that's what HB gets up to! WoW!
    I love to see the wind turbines, and stood underneath one for the first time in Cornwall, a few years ago. Breathtaking, they are! I just spent a weekend in Wales, where I had an excellent view of some on the coast. There's something about them that I love - I get so excited when I see a whole 'farm' of them! Great work, HB! :)
    Good to catch up with you, Janet. Great to see you had such a good time in Portland, and so good to see you in the photo's! :D
    Hugs, Suze xXx


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