The University of Nottingham is flying a blimp which it says will help people judge the impact of a wind farm it is proposing to build.
Three turbines could be erected at Grove Farm, near Clifton Bridge, if the plans are approved.
The blimp is being flown 80m (262ft) above the site.
But residents said the inflatable only represented a turbine without blades and was “considerably lower” than the actual 125m (410ft) of the structures.
Jock McPherson, of the Beeston and Clifton Wind Turbine Awareness Group, said: “A number of the local residents have consistently asked for the university to do something of this nature.
“But I think they were looking for it to be at a height representative of the turbines, rather than something considerably lower,” he said.
Chris Jagger, chief estates and facilities officer at the university, said the blimp was a response to a request from city planners who asked for the blimp to be flown after consulting local people.
He added that the university had produced a lot of information to indicate the visible impact that the three turbines would have on the Nottingham skyline.
The university estimates that the turbines would reduce its carbon emissions by 7,000 tonnes per year or 40% of the target reductions required by 2015.
It said an assessment of the university’s land holdings by the Carbon Trust identified the Grove Farm location, off Thane Road, as the most suitable for wind generation.
The plans will be considered later this year by the city council and Broxtowe Borough Council.
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