TIME FOR A TUNEUP?: Rowan's engineering students will repair Ocean Gate's Aenometer

TIME FOR A TUNEUP?: Rowan's engineering students will repair Ocean Gate's Aenometer

BY KEITH RUSCITTI

Borough officials say the town's aenometer needs a tuneup.

The anemometer, which is shaped like a small windmill, sits atop a 100-foot tower located on a field at the corner of Cape May and Wildwood Avenues behind the borough's municipal complex.

The device records the wind velocity and its direction and then transmits the information down to a device called a data plug, which is located in a box on the side of the base.

The tower and anemometer will stand in Ocean Gate for one year, which will mark the completion of the study. The purpose of the aenmometer is to determine the size of the wind turbine to install at the site.

Wind turbines are used to generate electricity, a prospect borough officials have been exploring for the past year.

However, the problem is that data fails to transmit to the box, according to Councilman Thomas Maydish.

It was erected on April 21 by nine Rowan University engineering students as part of the school's Clean Energy Program. State and federal grants fund the program.

Maydish said the Rowan engineering department has been notified and the students will travel to Ocean Gate to rectify the problem.

Mayor Paul Kennedy said the town will attempt to borrow a firetruck to lift the students to the anemometer in order to prevent dissembly to the tower.

"It's just not transmitting the meter readings to the box," said Kennedy. "If there is a way to get the students up to the anemometer to save time that is what we will try to do."

Every two weeks municipal officials send the data plug to Rowan University where the results are analyzed by the students.

Ocean Gate is the only municipality in the county that has an aenometer site.

According to a recent study by the National Research Council, estimates show that wind farms could generate 2 percent to 7 percent of the nation's electricity within 15 years.

The report notes that wind-powered turbines generated 11,605 megawatts of electricity in the United States in 2006, though that was still less than 1 percent of the national power supply.

The anemometer's biweekly readings are available for viewing at the engineering department's Web site at: www.rowan.edu/colleges/engineering/clinics/cleanenergy/cleanenergy.

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Date Published: Wednesday, September 19, 2007 - 01:00
Source URL: Asbury Park Press