Wind is one of the forms of renewable energy employed at Appalachian State University. The uneven heating of the atmosphere by the sun, the irregularities of the earth's surface, and rotation of the earth cause wind. Wind flow patterns are modified by the earth's terrain, bodies of water, and vegetative cover. This wind flow, or motion energy, when "harvested" by a wind turbine, is converted from kinetic energy to mechanical power. This mechanical power is then converted by a generator into useable, and in our case, grid-tied electricity.
Appalachian State is not only committed to lessening the environmental footprint left by daily operations, but also to producing students that understand the importance of embracing a sustainable existence. This means turning critical thinking to everyday occurrences like energy use. Conservation is key and so too, is sourcing. Wind energy can and does provide a clean and carbon-free portion of the energy needs of the Appalachian community.
NAME: Broyhill 100
LOCATION: 755 Bodenheimer Drive (highest point on campus)
INSTALLATION: June 2009
AVERAGE YEARLY PRODUCTION: 104,000 kWh
FUNDING SOURCE: 58% REI/42% NRL&P, with contribution from the senior class of '09
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The Story: The wind turbine has become the iconic symbol of Appalachian's commitment to renewable energy. When it was installed, the 100 kW facility was the largest wind turbine in the state of North Carolina. It is situated on the highest point on campus and stands more than 152 feet tall. Funding for the turbine came predominately from the student-backed ASU Renewable Energy Initiative with generous support from New River Light & Power Company.
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