Menzies College pupils had a chance to find out more about the wind turbines that are being installed at Mercury Energy’s Kaiwera Downs Wind Farm.
The pupils viewed the blade of a wind turbine that was being trucked to Mercury Energy’s Kaiwera Downs Wind Farm last week.
The truck stopped in Wyndham for residents and pupils to view.
Vestas wind turbine company is one of the companies partnering with Mercury to install 10 turbines as part of the stage one project.
Staff members Diego Fresco, of Spain, Josh Kernahan, of Australia, Tomasz Knap, of Poland, and site manager John Hulme, of South Africa, spoke to the pupils about the turbines and the process of installing them.
Mr Hulme said while the turbines did have a lift inside them, that was not installed until the turbines were up in the air.
During the installation process, staff climbed up the column of the turbine.
It could be scary climbing the column as it could move several metres in the wind, he said.
The men also demonstrated the gear they wore to make sure they were safe when installing the turbines.
The three blades of the turbine weigh 30 tonnes each.
Even though it might look as if the blades were travelling slowly, they travelled between 250kmh to 270kmh.”‘‘When you stand underneath it goes pretty quickly.’’
Mr Kernahan, who grew up in New Zealand, encouraged the pupils to think about an engineering career so they could be part of projects like the wind farm.
‘‘The wind industry is only getting bigger and bigger.’’
He and his colleagues had travelled the world in their careers.
‘‘There’s huge amounts of possibilities out there.’’
The end section of the blade was serrated, which was similar to the feathers of an owl which was the quietest flying bird, Mr Kernahan said.
‘‘A lot of your base engineering principles come from nature.’’
Menzies’ head boy, Hunter Richards, said he was surprised at the size of the blade.
‘‘It was bigger than I thought.’’
He was impressed the wind farm created 50 jobs in the community.