SIGEL TOWNSHIP — A DTE spokesman said a recent broken wind turbine blade in Huron County was the result of a “manufacturing defect.”
“The best way to characterize it is (as) a manufacturing defect,” spokesman Scott Simons told the Tribune on Tuesday of the blade that broke in March at DTE Energy’s Thumb Wind Park.
“That’s the first problem that we’ve had with a blade or any other component, so our confidence in GE remains high,” Simons said.
DTE officials recently met with General Electric, which manufactures the turbines used in DTE’s Thumb Wind Park, to get an explanation of the root cause of the break, which occurred during a low-wind period March 11. The blade was found on the ground near the turbine, which is on Parisville Road near Learman Road in Sigel Township.
“There was a problem in the production of that particular blade, so they’re looking at their quality control to see whether those conditions that were present in the production of the blade were present during the production of other blades,” Simons said.
He noted the root-cause analysis found the break was an isolated event that was a “first failure of this type.”
There are 40 turbines in Sigel Township that are part of DTE’s Thumb Wind Park. DTE currently is constructing its Echo Wind Park in the Elkton area, which will consist of 70 GE wind turbines.