BS in Mechanical Engineering
Mechanical Engineering Department
Patrick Lemeuix, Tom Mackin
With the completion of a 3.5kW wind turbine located on Esculea Ranch, the power generated from the turbine was dissipated through electric resistance heaters. ABC Wind was given the task to design, build, and implement a system what will efficiently use the turbine’s harnessed power. After interviewing with the Beef Operations Manager of Escuela Ranch, it was decided to use the turbine’s power to supply supplementary water to anywhere on the ranch where and when needed by grazing cattle. The purpose of this project was to research, design, build and implement a system that would harness the generated power and use it to provide supplementary water across the ranch. To begin, research was done online to generate ideas and to find existing systems in the field. An interview with Dr. Lemieux was scheduled to better understand the wind turbines power generation. With this gathered information, ABC Wind proposed a micro‐grid system to harness, store, and utilize the power when needed pump supplementary water. Furthermore, ABC Wind also proposed to tie into an existing water line to pump to 1000 gallon storage tanks located on a high elevation from where it can then be routed to virtually anywhere on the ranch. A 4.1kWh battery was donated to the project for storing energy and to use as a power source when the turbine would not produce sufficient energy for the system. A pump was chosen to overcome the calculated 325ft of head due to elevation and fluid pressures. Given the turbine’s 0‐ 500V wide range of voltage production and the high power, we researched, designed, and tested a buck converter to regulate the output with a constant voltage. This constant voltage of 28V is necessary to correctly charge the battery and to drive the pump for our system. From this, ABC Wind was able to design and propose a system to be implemented for the use of the turbine on Esculea Ranch.