Source: BARRE, Vt. and CHICAGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Northern Power Systems, Inc. (www.northernpower.com(link is external)), a next-generation wind energy company and leading manufacturer of community wind turbines in Barre, today unveiled a Wind for Schools package that will help more schools produce their own wind power and engage their students and communities in realizing the benefits of renewable energy. Announced at WINDPOWER 2009, the package outfits educational institutions with a Northwind 100 wind turbine, standards-based K-12 curriculum that is customized and linked to real-time turbine data and web-based access for students and community members.The Wind for Schools package arrives at a particularly critical juncture as schools in the United States face ballooning utility costs and look to take advantage of opportunities presented by The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The bill provides over $2.5 billion in grants to help state and local governments fund their renewable energy projects via the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program (EECBG), and also authorizes an additional $1.6 billion in Clean Renewable Energy Bonds (CREBs), which schools can take advantage along with various state and local incentive programs.“Our Northwind 100 is perfectly suited to meet the energy, aesthetic and budgetary requirements of schools and universities,” said Jim Stover, Vice President of Product Management at Northern Power Systems. “Now, with our comprehensive Wind for Schools package that includes a ready-made curriculum and other supporting products, we can give schools everything they need to save on electricity costs, improve environmental performance and educate a future generation of leaders on the dimensions of a green economy.”Across the country, elementary and secondary schools spend over $4.1 billion on energy and use over 50 billion kilowatt hours of electricity every year. At 100kW of rated power, a Northwind 100 can offset a large portion of the energy costs for an individual school with a turbine that is sleek, quiet and aesthetically suited to the community. More importantly, with Northern Power Systems’ new package, faculty can teach students the benefits of renewable energy, the value of environmental stewardship and the potential of exciting new career paths.“For Schools, the opportunity is not only to educate tomorrow’s leaders about energy and the environment, but also to gain real savings that can translate to teacher positions, arts programs, facility improvements and even other renewable energy projects,” stated Patricia Barry, Environmental Agent for the Medford Clean Energy Committee in Medford, MA. The city recently installed a Northwind 100 at its local elementary and middle school and their PublicView website is fully operational at: https://smartview.northernpower.com/public/medford(link is external)Similar school-based projects have been installed or planned at other educational institutions across the country such as:Appalachian State College, North CarolinaNature’s Classroom, MassachusettsWassau High School, WisconsinRichland Community College, IllinoisNew England Tech, Rhode IslandThe Wind for Schools package, designed specifically to meet the permitting and budgetary needs of schools and communities, includes the following products and services:Northwind 100 wind turbine: Northern Power Systems’ permanent magnet direct drive technology is recognized as an industry breakthrough.Education Curriculum: Co-created by the National Energy Education Development Project (NEED), this curriculum set outfits instructors and students with educational guides, kits to conduct hands-on activities and a custom curriculum designed to work specifically for use with Northern Power Systems’ Northwind 100 and StudentView program.A complete set of monitoring and data acquisition tools chosen from Northern’s Smartview product family:AdminView: monitoring, reporting and turbine control for administrators and facility managers.StudentView: a classroom interface that includes site-specific datasets for use with the custom curriculum.PublicView: real-time data and mini-trends, customized with your school’s logo and links that allow schools to share their success with the local community and other schools across the Internet.Interactive Kiosk: A touch screen display for students and community members that highlights school-specific project work and serves as a focal point for field trips and events.About Northern Power SystemsNorthern Power Systems has over 30 years of experience in developing advanced, innovative wind turbines. In August 2008, Northern was established as stand-alone wind energy company when private investors acquired the business from Distributed Energy Systems (NASDAQ: DESCQ). A subsequent funding round in September 2008 brought the total available working capital to more than $40 million.The company’s next generation wind turbine technology is based on a vastly simplified architecture that utilizes a unique combination of permanent magnet generators and direct-drive design. This revolutionary new approach delivers higher energy capture, eliminates drive-train noise, and significantly reduces maintenance and downtime costs. The company currently manufactures the Northwind 100 turbine, designed specifically for community wind applications such as schools/universities, businesses, commercial farms, and municipalities. Next year, the company plans to launch a 2.2MW turbine into the utility-scale marketplace for wind farm applications. Northern Power Systems is a fully integrated company that designs, manufactures, and sells wind turbines into the global marketplace from its headquarters in Vermont, USA. For additional information visit www.northernpower.com(link is external).
The University of Wisconsin men’s and women’s track teams will be out of town this weekend, as the two squads will look to take advantage of opportunities to improve. Both teams will be headed to the Jim Duncan Invitational in Des Moines, Iowa.Action will take place on both Friday and Saturday as some of UW’s athletes strive to qualify for the looming NCAA regionals. Several athletes on the men’s and women’s teams have already qualified, but they still maintain they have a lot of work to do. Nate Larkin, a member of the men’s team who has qualified for regionals, ran a time of 14.12 seconds in the 110-meter hurdles. Larkin, a junior hurdler from Glen Ellyn, Ill., had a breakthrough season in 2009, exceeding even his own expectations.“Making nationals for the indoor season was a surprise for me and the coaching staff,” Larkin said.Larkin burst onto the scene in the 2009 indoor track season, qualifying for the NCAA Championships in the 60-meter hurdles. The junior also had a quality performance in the Big Ten Championships, placing third in the event. With the indoor season now in the books, Larkin has his mind set on carrying over his recent success indoors to the outdoor track.“I was not really sure how the switch from the 60 to the 110 would go,” Larkin said, who competes in the 110-meter hurdles during the outdoor season. “But I am determined to get back to nationals.”Larkin has already begun to adjust to the added distance and says his NCAA regional-qualifying bid was a satisfying accomplishment.“The regional mark is something good to get out of the way,” Larkin said. “But my goals are much higher for the outdoor season.”Like many athletes in the UW track program, Larkin has gradually progressed into the type of competitor who expects to run against the nation’s best. He has worked hard to reach this point in his career but says there was a moment in the 2009 indoor season where something for him changed.“For me, it was something that just clicked, and I just reached a whole another level,” Larkin said. “I got myself into rhythm and, especially in my event, you get to a certain level where tiny adjustments can make a huge difference in races.”Larkin and the rest of the UW team have plenty of outdoor season left and Larkin is looking forward to seeing how he and his team perform in the upcoming meets. Friday will be another chance for UW to improve.“These upcoming meets are going to show us a lot about where we are as a team,” Larkin said. “Once our distance runners get going along with our 800 runners, I feel like we can put up some pretty special marks as a team.”While Larkin and the rest of the men’s team get ready to prove themselves, the women’s team and head coach Jim Stintzi are also looking to make some more progress.Stintzi will be bringing a smaller team out to Des Moines, as some of the athletes are in need of rest. Amy Lewis, Chavon Robinson and Gwen Jorgensen have all just recently qualified for the NCAA regionals and will be receiving much-needed time off, but Stintzi doesn’t want to be without three of his leaders for long.“They have all been stalwarts for us,” Stintzi said. “They are big-time performers who have done very well throughout their careers.”Stintzi is proud of the leadership role his seniors have taken and knows how positive their effect on the younger members of the team is.“They are positive all of the time — they get their teammates up for meets and keep everyone working hard,” Stintzi said.Stintzi also mentioned a couple of freshman who may be in a position to qualify for regionals in the upcoming meet.“Jenna Severson and Megan Rennhack could have a great chance to qualify for regionals by season’s end,” Stintzi said. “We have a lot talented freshman who are performing well for us.”NCAA qualifying aside, Stintzi and his team are looking forward to and are focused on the task at hand. “This weekend is another opportunity for the team to put the spikes on, to run fast, to get more reps in throwing, and basically, to just keep getting better.”