DOE Honors Knight & Carver’s Low Wind Speed Blade Design

Nearly 75 wind-energy leaders from the public and private sectors attended the Department of Energy’s Peer Review Meeting in Golden, Colorado, to witness the Wind Blade Division of Knight & Carver receive honors from the U.S. Department of Energy. The company’s $2.8 million shared-cost research and development (R&D) project will ultimately lead to production of a wind blade that produces energy in low wind speed regions.

The award was for “Outstanding Research and Development Partnership to Advance Wind Energy Technology” in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy, the University of California at Davis and Sandia National Laboratories of Albuquerque, NM. The project is one vital element within the Dept. of Energy’s strategy to reduce wind-powered electricity generation costs at low-speed sites, and to open new areas of wind production by utilizing next-generation configurations, designs and concepts. Known by the technical title of Adaptive Sweep Twist Blade, its launch a year and a half ago is now in the final phases of R&D. When completed, Knight & Carver will produce a longer-than-conventional blade that automatically twists during high wind to reduce loads on the machine thus producing a maximized amount of wind energy. Therefore, longer blades than normal can be safely used in regions regarded as lower-wind production areas. Sized at 27.2 meters by 2.4 meters, the Adaptive Sweep Twist Blade is designed both for maximum efficiency at lower-speed wind conditions and, when necessary, can automatically adjust to higher wind gusts. Production is expected to begin next year. “We are extremely honored to receive this award,” said Gary Kanaby, Knight & Carver’s Wind Blade Division Manager, “because there are so many outstanding R&D teams in the wind sector these days. With so much progress being made so quickly in this industry, this truly is an exciting time for our company and our employees.”

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