Texas has won the right to develop a large-scale wind turbine research and testing facility, Jerry Patterson, Texas General Land Office commissioner, said today. The facility, just one of two in the nation to be built, will be located at Ingleside, just north of Corpus Christi. It will develop the next generation of wind-turbine technology to produce more kilowatts per turbine than can be achieved now.
The U.S. Energy Department also chose Massachusetts as the site for a research facility. Four other states competed for the research development.
“This is the birth of a new industry here in Texas,” Patterson said. “Once we build these test facilities, the wind turbine and blade manufacturers will come. I think there will be plenty of business for both Texas and Massachusetts to come out winners.”
Major oil company BP donated the 22 acres of land for the facility, along with giving a donation of $250,000 toward funding it. Other Texas industries also contributed, including Dow Chemical Co. and Huntsman Corp.
The Texas bid for the test facility was handled by the Lone Star Wind Alliance, a Texas-led coalition of universities, government agencies and corporate partners that was created to prepare the proposal for submission to the federal government.
The facility will be built through an innovative public-private partnership, organized through the National Renewable Energy Laboratory of the U.S. Department of Energy. Private wind turbine and blade manufacturers are expected to fund the operations of the facility within five years of its construction.