Underwater turbines overwhelmed
by powerful East River
August 13, 2007 Associated Press
NEW YORK -- Six giant turbines lowered
into the East River to harness the kinetic power of
its tides have been shut down for repairs and a basic
redesign weeks after being dedicated.
"The good thing
is that there's more power in the East River than
we thought," said Mollie E. Gardner, a geologist for
Verdant Power, the Virginia-based company that partnered
with New York to create the six underwater turbines.
The technology for the turbines relies on the same
principles as hydropower and wind power. They were
shut down for repairs after the powerful East River
ripped off the tips of several blades on two turbines.
The company had attempted to repair them with heavier
blades, but they also were unable to withstand the
"The only way for us to learn is to get the
turbines into the water and start breaking them," said the
company's founder, Trey Taylor. The project is in the midst
of an 18-month testing phase. At full capacity, the 10-megawatt
project could general power for as many as 10,000 homes.
But one drawback of the technology is that there isn't always
Information from: The New York Times, http://www.nytimes.com