Archive for Thursday, November 22, 2001

Wind farm can power up to 33,000 homes

November 22, 2001

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— The Gray County Wind Farm has finished building all 170 of its wind turbines, marking the end of the construction of the largest wind farm ever built in Kansas.

The project finished three weeks ahead of schedule.

"By this time next week, we should have all of the turbines in operation," construction manager Rusty Hurt said Tuesday.

The project was sped by favorable weather, although windy days meant cranes could not hoist the massive rotors to the top of the 207-foot-tall towers.

At peak power, the $100 million wind farm will churn out 110 megawatts of electricity enough to power 33,000 homes.

Hurt said the wind blew hard enough last week to spin the 154-foot-diameter rotors on the 120 towers already on line at full power, which could produce 80 megawatts of power.

The wind farm is owned by FPL Energy, the nation's largest producer of wind turbine electricity.

FPL Energy spokeswoman Mary Wells said the company is still looking for additional wind-farm sites in Kansas.

UtiliCorp United is buying power from the wind farm to distribute in Kansas and Missouri.

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