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Collegiate Wind Team Finishes Third at Technical Challenge Competition

wind team
L-R Ryan Storz, assistant professor of Engineering Technology, Devyn Ito (ME-19), Garrett Parker (IBL-19), David Kizilkaya (ME-19), Alex Sadamune (ME-19), John Wang (FET-20), and Dr. Tom Nordenholz, professor of Mechanical Engineering. 

Cal Maritime finished third overall at the U.S. Department of Energy's Collegiate Wind Competition Technical Challenge.
The full-scale Collegiate Wind Competition is held biennially, and the Cal Maritime team won the last overall competition in 2018.The technical challenge offers an opportunity for students to return and improve on their previous work. The teams were given an opportunity to take work in the second-generation wind tunnel developed by a team from the DOE's National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

The Collegiate Wind Competition seeks to prepare college students from multiple disciplines to enter the wind energy workforce by providing real-world technology experience. The competition challenges participants with tasks including wind plant siting, and wind turbine design, building, and testing. 

At the technical challenge competition, teams were tasked with developing:
  • An effective mechanical, electrical, and aerodynamic wind turbine and load design that is safe and reliable for testing in an on-site wind tunnel
  • An electrical control system that can maintain a constant voltage into a competition-provided, variable-resistance load during the durability portion of the turbine testing
  • A cost of energy analysis for the site plan developed in 2018

The teams completed several rounds of testing in the second-generation tunnel and adjusted their designs throughout the technical challenge.

Final scores were determined by each team's scoring in turbine testing, project development, and technical design.

Twelve schools participated in the competition this year. Penn State and Virginia Tech finished first and second respectively.

The 2020 Collegiate Wind Competition will be held at the American Wind Energy Association WINDPOWER Conference in Denver, Colorado, June 1-4, 2020. 
 Wind Tunnel
Werner Slocum, NREL
Werner Slocum, NREL
 Wind Team accepting award
Werner Slocum, NREL

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Last updated: 8/27/20