The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

Fayette school turbine to see some idle time 2011.09.08

Written by David Green.

with photo

Fayette school superintendent Russ Griggs has heard people express surprise about the district’s wind turbine in a couple of situations.

Some people are surprised that it doesn’t spin faster on days when the wind is blowing briskly. The answer, Griggs explains, is due to the way the system is built. A more rapid spin isn’t necessary for peak generation of electricity.

He’s also heard comments about the opposite situation—surprise to see the turbines moving in a light wind. That’s a condition that won’t be seen anymore.

It’s possible that wind at the top of the turbine is considerably stronger than what’s felt in the school parking lot, but light winds that put the blades into motion won’t have that effect now that a change was made.

“Adjustments have been made to the wind turbine for it to sleep, or idle, at low wind speeds,” Griggs explained. 

The turbine was set to begin working in a wind as light as seven miles an hour, but that setting was advanced to a higher speed.

“At the lower wind speeds the turbine actually uses more power than it produces to turn the blades into the slow moving winds,” Griggs said. “Electric motors turn the blades into the wind. The adjustment will make the turbine more efficient and reduce wear and tear on the components when not turning.”

When people see an idle turbine, they’re often concerned that it isn’t working correctly,  Griggs said.

“Many people have commented on the times the turbine is not spinning, concerned that it is not working. The idea is to make it work better.”

If the turbine is idle during a strong wind, there are two possible causes. Either the wind speed exceeds the maximum allowed before the unit shuts itself down, or the wind is gusty and shifting direction. In the latter condition the computer system suspects a “turbulent imbalance” and shuts down.

When that happens, a text message is sent to a school maintenance staff member who will make a visual inspection of the unit. If no problem is detected, the turbine is restarted.

Griggs said total production since January is approximately 95,000 kilowatt hours or 31 percent of the electricity used at the school during the current calendar year.

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