The Clemson University Restoration Institute and its partners have received a $45 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy, combined with $53 million of matching funds, to build and operate a large-scale wind turbine drivetrain testing facility at the institute's research campus on the site of a former U.S. Navy base.
According to Clemson, the award is the largest single grant ever received in the university's history.
The university's partners include: the Charleston Naval Complex Redevelopment Authority, the South Carolina Department of Commerce, the State of South Carolina, South Carolina Public Railways, the South Carolina State Ports Authority, and private partners RENK AG, Tony Bakker and James Meadors.
The testing facility will be housed in Building 69, a former Navy warehouse adjacent to rail and ship-handling infrastructure. The facility is equipped to accommodate accelerated testing of advanced drivetrain systems for wind turbines in the 5 MW to 15 MW range, with a 30% overload capacity.
Planning and construction of the facility will begin in the first quarter of 2010, with a targeted operational date in the third quarter of 2012.