The US Department of Energy (DOE) and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) have agreed to provide partial funding of $5.6 million to a cluster project of six wind turbines for two sites near Brownfield and Lubbock in Texas. The 4.5 MW project is one of five projects selected under the new Turbine Verification Programme (TVP) for "distributed" projects (Windpower Monthly, September 1997). Total DOE funding for the five projects is $6 million, with the balance of the $5.6 million for the Texas project from EPRI. The City of Brownfield, in the Texas panhandle, is the host utility for the project, to be developed solely by the little known Texas Wind Power Company of Austin. Also now involved are Brownfield Wind LLC and a wind project construction company, Foras Energy Services. DOE says the turbine selection has not been completed yet. The projects are to become operational by mid to late 1998. The turbines will produce power for municipal services and for agricultural water pumping. The programme is to boost utility confidence in wind power. EPRI's Chuck McGowin has said that technology for the Texas cluster is likely to be different from that used at other projects in the TVP programme, such as the Cannon Wind Eagle or Zond. The turbine selection is expected to be announced soon.
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Senior Renewable Energy Analyst (WindGEMINI Product Lead) DNV GL Bristol (City Centre), City of Bristol