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Sound Solution for Windmill

Media Release - 28 November 2003


Sound Solution for Windmill

Windflow's Prototype back in Operation early next year

The gearbox of the prototype wind turbine run by Windflow Technology is soon to be removed from its 30 meter-high tower at Gebbies Pass site for modification.

After months of tests, engineers from Windflow and the gear box manufacture have isolated a significant noise source within the gearbox and are moving to fix it without delay.

A crane will be needed to remove the gearbox and blades from the tower. The gearbox will then be sent to the Auckland manufacturers for modifications.

Windflow's Chief Executive, Geoff Henderson, said today that he hoped the turbine would be operating again in February.

At the annual meeting of the company last Wednesday, Mr Henderson explained how an endoscope had been used to examine the gearbox and discovered signs of rubbing on a small component called a thrust collar. This rubbing is believed to be the major source of the mechanical noise. Mr Henderson then went on to say, "In all other respects the New Zealand made gearbox has exceeded our expectations, and we are very happy with it."

"The noise from the turbine has always been greater than we intended. These modifications will be a significant step towards our goal of international best practice," he said.

Other matters discussed by the eighty shareholders attended the company's annual meeting, included transferring the company from the unlisted market to the New Zealand Exchange's new AX Exchange. Shareholders approved resolutions for the transfer, and Windflow is expected to be trading on the new board next Tuesday.

Mr Henderson said once the Gebbies Pass turbine was back in operation the company would push on to stage two of its plans which entailed building six more turbines.

He believes the strong interest being shown by potential buyers in New Zealand and overseas is due to the unique gearbox, which has many advantages over the existing overseas machines.


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