One Energy To Begin Restarting Wind Turbine Fleet

(From One Energy)

One Energy will begin controlled restarts of its fleet of wind turbines.

On January 22, 2024, a single blade fell from a wind turbine at one of the Company’s projects in Findlay, Ohio.

No one was injured by the event and no part of the blade or debris field left the Company’s property.

The fleet has not been operating while the Company conducted, with the aid of independent engineers and research institutions, a root cause assessment of the incident and a systematic evaluation of every turbine in its fleet.

The Company has determined that there was an abnormality with the bolted flange assembly that connects the blade to the hub.

The issue was not caused by the blade, the internals of the bearing, or the blade bolts.

The flange abnormality led to a higher than intended load transfer to the blade bolts which resulted in them fatiguing much faster than designed.

The fatigue loads eventually led multiple bolts to have a cascading failure that resulted in the blade completely separating from the turbine and falling to the ground.

The Company has inspected every major bolted flange in each of its wind turbines as part of the investigation.

Every single field-installed bolt has had, or will have, its torque rechecked before each turbine begins operating again.

One Energy will begin restarting the turbines in its fleet that do not have the abnormality.

The Company is replacing every single blade bolt in the turbines that have or may have an abnormality.

The Company is also correcting the abnormality in affected turbines. This 100% bolt replacement will restart the fatigue life of the bolts, and this correction in the flanges assemblies will ensure that the bolts are properly loaded going forward. In conjunction with the independent engineers and research institutions’ support, the Company has developed new monitoring programs and testing programs that it plans to implement and share with the wind industry.

These new methods will allow the Company to gain industry-leading insights into the real-time loads on its bolts and the conditions of its flanges going forward.

“This should not have happened, but it did. Our safety protocols and the siting of this turbine ensured that this mechanical event was contained entirely to our property. Our job as the owner of these turbines is to zealously learn from this event. Our responsibility is to share what we have learned from this event with the rest of industry so they can learn from this event as well and we can all end the culture of secrecy about failures.” -Jereme Kent, CEO.

The Company is assembling long form reports and will share those reports with the public and industry once they are fully assembled and reviewed.