Allow me to introduce myself as the proud owner of what was a beautiful concept: The idea of communication towers and sites sporting renewable energy. It seemed like a good idea. So we made a prototype with a 160 foot lattice tower and placed 12 200 watt solar panels on it with a 15 kW Proven wind turbine.
The wind turbine is where we made a mistake. We chose the Proven 15 kW because of its size and production. In eight months it made a tremendous amount of power. Suddenly, Proven notified us to shut it down, stating that blades were failing in Europe and one in the US. We were told to take the turbine down, and they would come to pick it up. We were promised a full replacement turbine. We received the Nacelle 10 months later, but without the blades. “Oops,” Proven’s sales rep said to me, “Didn’t we tell you? You need to take the blades down from the turbine you have up, cut the blades off two feet and fabricate them back together, and put them back up! I will send you the 18 page instructions. Of course we are not going to pay you to do this.”
We refused to do the blade fabrication, and stated we wanted our money back. Or maybe new blades? Proven by then had a new CEO, Paul Aston, and he told me he wasn’t going to give me blades until he could prove that our 160 foot engineered tower was “safe”. That took him another eight months, and we were left with customers and passersby asking us repeatedly why our turbine wasn’t spinning.
Eventually, Paul Aston agreed that Glenn Marten Towers had engineered our tower to meet his standards. I was absolutely sure by that time that I did not want a Proven machine on my tower so I asked, again and repeatedly, for my money back. Eventually, Mr. Aston agreed to pay me $30,000, a fraction of the full cost. Well, you guessed it: He waited another 60 days and then told me that he was tired of dealing with me and I could do what I wanted with the turbine/s. (Remember, I have a spare brand new Nacelle sitting in my yard with no blades?)
The wind community deserves better. This story has to be told. There are others out their in the greater US that have also had issues with Proven. I sincerely hope that there will not be any more customers who are bilked like me.
A request for advice: Would any of you turn this turbine on? We have never seen a recorded wind blast over 80 mph. Supposedly the blades failed in gale force 120 mph winds. What would you do?