Sunday, March 23, 2008

Lightning damage: Netherlands, July, 2006

Not surprisingly, tall wind turbines are prone to lightning strikes. Here's the result of one such strike on the blade of a turbine in The Netherlands:

Unfortunately, the repair work involves lots of people, several giant cranes and shedloads of equipment. Wiping out any perceived emissions saving from that turbine for a while:

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Fire: January 2007

Unidentified location. Two blades of the turbine on fire, as well as the central motor area. Blades still turning, producing a nice swirling effect of smoke.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Collapse: Scotland, November 2007

From The Herald, 12th November 2007:

Engineers were working over the weekend to investigate the collapse of a wind turbine which led to three Scottish wind farms being shut.

The 200ft turbine at the Beinn an Tuirc wind farm in Argyll and Bute "bent in half" during heavy winds last week.

ScottishPower, which owns the 26-turbine facility, has closed it while representatives of the company that manufacture Vestas V47 machines investigate the fault.

Dunlaw wind farm, a 26-turbine base near Lauder in the Borders, and the 20-turbine Hare Hill facility, close to New Cumnock, Ayrshire, were also shut down as a precautionary measure.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Collapse: Oregon, August 2007

A giant wind turbine tower collapsed in Eastern Oregon, causing a worker to fall to his death and another man to be injured.

Full article in

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Fire: Sunderland, December 2005

A major north-east road had to be closed after fire broke out at a £2m windfarm.

The fire started in one of the turbines at Nissan's Washington factory. Both carriageways of the nearby A19 in Sunderland were shut to traffic amid fears that smoke would reduce visibility and that the turbine could fall into the trunk road.

A fault in the power pack at the top of a 180ft concrete shaft of a turbine is thought to have started the blaze, which was allowed to burn out. Its three fibreglass blades were badly damaged and investigations were under way to find out what exactly sparked the fire.

Further information from the This Is the North East archive.

Fire: Burgos, Spain, July 2007

Spectacular fire in a wind turbine, which is stationary. Lots of smoke. Unaffected turbines on either side are also stationary:

Monday, March 17, 2008

Explosion: Aarhus, Denmark, February 2008

Many wind turbines contain a braking mechanism. This stops the turbine from overspinning, the runaway effect of which is:

That's a turbine in Hornslet near Aarhus, Denmark. Here's the same spectacular explosion from a more distant angle. Note how long it takes for the blades to fall to earth, and also the white van at the base of the tower.

Thankfully no-one was hurt, as a zone of 400 metres around the tower was evacuated.