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The prototype for a wind turbine on the campus of City College became the property of City College, after serving over nine years as a test unit for Taisei Techno. The Taisei Vertical Axis Wind Turbine generates 10 kilowatts of power for the school, which is enough to power some administration offices at the college.

During a brief ceremony and celebration, on Friday, the ownership of the unit was transferred in an agreement signed by Chancellor of Montana State University Billings, Dr. Dan Edelman, and Chairman of Taisei Techno, Muneyoshi Shibagaki.

Taisei Techno is a Japanese firm that entered the wind turbine industry about ten years ago. The company has been developing a market for the Vertical Axis Wind Turbine in the US by establishing prototypes to test and refine the technology and demonstrate its potential. Rhino Stinchield, President of GreenWorld Partners, LLC is a distributor of the product and one of the event spokespeople.

Standing like a giant sentinel alongside a parking lot at City College, the turbine will continue to serve as a demonstration unit for prospective clients of Taisei, while continuing to supply energy to the college. More importantly, the unit will be used by the college to help educate students about energy.

Since its installation in October 2010, the company has set up other turbines in the area, including a unit at a crosswalk on 32nd Street in Billings, as well as throughout areas of Wyoming by the Wyoming Department of Transportation to operate speed limit signs.

The turbine was invented by Tsuneo Noguchi, a former pilot who was inspired by airplane wings. The turbine’s value is in its versatility. The 10 kilowatt unit that was installed at City College is much larger than what most commercial applications will require.

For example the turbine on 32nd Street, which is augmented by a solar panel, generates only 0.2 watts of power. Most applications will require units that generate between 1 and 5 kilowatts, according to Stinchfield.

From 200W to 50KW and more, the turbine can be used as part of commercial power system by incorporating with grid and/or as independent type power supply with battery. In urban areas or remote rural areas it can serve a wide range purposes. It generates electricity at low and medium wind speeds, regardless of wind direction. It makes no noise and is easy to maintain. It is made from recyclable materials.