In continuing efforts to become more sustainable, MOFGA has erected a ten-kilowatt Bergey Excel wind generator atop an eighty-foot tilt-up tower. It is located on MOFGA's field in Thorndike, and is visible from Route 220.
When the Kelmscott Farm in Lincolnville donated this non-functioning wind generator to MOFGA, the MOFGA Buildings and Grounds staff was determined to make it work once again. Bergey wind machines are considered to be reliable and robust machines. With generous financial support from MOFGA donors the Buildings & Grounds crew completely rebuilt the machine, upgraded guy wire grip-clip devices on the tower, and buried new grounds. They dug trenches across the field to an inverter set-up in MOFGA's red barn, and mounted electric watt-hour meters and an educational display outside the barn, as well as an inverter and appropriate safety equipment inside the barn. MOFGA had to ship the turbine head to Okalahoma for a complete rebuild, while MOFGA staff members rebuilt internal parts such as the brush assembly and furling mechanisms.
Wind generators in the ten-kilowatt range can help provide a substantial amount of power to small commercial enterprises and farms. MOFGA hopes this wind generator will generate most of the power used at the Common Ground Country Fair. Since the Maine Legislature has instituted "net billing" in Maine, MOFGA will be able to put power into the grid over the entire year and use the power generated to offset its own power use. Being able to "bank" power generation over an entire year is good for MOFGA as the organization's electric demand is quite substantial during the Common Ground Country Fair. Unfortunately, MOFGA still has to pay service and demand charges to its local utility.
Read more about MOFGA's windmill.
For more information about MOFGA's wind energy projects, contact Jason Tessier, MOFGA's Facilities Coordinator.