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Oregon State University conducts research at the Mesalands Wind Center

December 6, 2013

Mesalands Community College is pleased to announce that graduate students and professors from Oregon State University, will be utilizing the College’s wind turbine, located adjacent to the North American Wind Research and Training Center, to evaluate wind farms potential impact on bird and bat fatalities. Their research will explore possible risks to these animals including, reduction in habitat, disruptions of migratory pathways, injury/mortality through collision, and injury/mortality in wake vortices. Oregon State University will mount vibration sensors to the wind blades, impact data will then be collected by launching tennis balls directly at the blades. The sensor output will be correlated to allow a quantification of impacts in terms of vibration.

“For the most part, bird fatalities are caused by impact, whereas in bats the cause is the pressure wave hitting the bat. This scientific research is especially important for birds that are of an endangered species. Also, in some agricultural areas bats play a significant role in crop success,” said Jim Morgan, Director of the North American Wind Research and Training Center at Mesalands said. “Mesalands is excited to be a part of this revolutionary research project with Oregon State University. Our turbine and first-class facilities at the Wind Center, are not only used to train students to become qualified wind energy technicians, but to also contribute to the future research of wind energy technology.”

Representatives from Oregon State University will be conducting their research at the North American Wind Research and Training Center, December 9-13, 2013.