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NREL - National Renewable Energy Laboratory
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Facilities

Our facilities are designed to meet the wind industry's critical research needs with state-of-the-art design and testing facilities. NREL's unique and highly versatile facilities at the National Wind Technology Center offer research and analysis of wind turbine components and prototypes rated from 400 watts to 3 megawatts. Satellite facilities support the growth of wind energy development across the United States.

National Wind Technology Center Facilities

Our facilities are contained within a 305-acre area that comprises field test sites, test laboratories, industrial high-bay work areas, machine shops, electronics and instrumentation laboratories, and office areas. In addition, there are hundreds of test articles and supporting components such as turbines, meteorological towers, custom test apparatus, test sheds, storage areas, and calibration and measurement instruments. We also have data acquisition systems, load frames, computers and electronics, machine tools, supporting heavy equipment, and associated required infrastructure including electrical power, water, fire protection, and fiber optic communications.

Take an online tour of the NWTC, or read about the site's wind resource characteristics that make the NWTC ideal for testing wind turbines.

Satellite Facilities

State and federal officials and wind industry leaders celebrated the opening of the first facility in the United States capable of testing large-scale wind turbine blades up to 90 meters in length. The length of turbine blades has grown along with the size of the turbines. Each doubling of the blade length enables the capture of four times more energy.

The Wind Technology Testing Center (WTTC) offers U.S. manufacturers a facility to test new blade designs. Both the NWTC and the WTTC offer a full suite of certification tests for turbine blades. The NWTC tests blades up to 50 meters in length while the WTTC can test blades up to 90 meters. With 30 years of blade testing experience, the National Wind Technology Center (NWTC) functions as an expert partner with the newly commissioned WTTC.