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Students from across Maine take part in Windstorm Challenge

Published: May. 13, 2022 at 5:51 PM EDT
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ORONO, Maine (WABI) - The University of Maine welcomed in young minds from across the state to take part in their windstorm challenge.

45 teams competed to build scale model wind turbine platforms to test under wind and wave conditions.

“I want to be an engineer. And this competition is what opened that doorway for me to understand that,” said Brewer High School student Colin Kimbell.

The winning team is awarded an internship worth $20,000 at the University’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center if they attend UMaine.

Win or lose these students are getting the chance to test their knowledge and explore their love of science.

“But it’s been amazing. So, this is my fourth year coming to this competition. And I’ve loved it all four years, this competition has opened my eyes to what I want to do in my life,” Kimbell added.

The competition also provides a learning experience that’s difficult to recreate in a classroom.

“I think honestly, building platforms like these and doing projects like this hands-on project have taught me a lot more than just being in school,” said Cooper Parlee of Brewer High School.

“There’s so much physics involved to that, and I really found a good way to apply my knowledge, instead of just like basic textbook problems,” added Swarop Handral of Brewer High School.

The students are designing smaller versions of what UMaine students are already creating.

Which the Executive Director of the Advanced Structures and composite Center of the University of Maine argues could be life changing.

“Within 50 miles of the coast of Maine there’s enough offshore wind capacity to power the whole state of Maine multiple times over,” said Dr. Habib Dagher of the University of Maine.

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