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Students compete at University of Maine in Wind Blade Challenge, Windstorm Challenge

Posted April 27, 2012, at 6:38 p.m.
John McConnell (right) and Gabe Mahoney of Falmouth try to keep their windmill upright during the DeepCwind Consortium's Windstorm Challenge 2012 at the University of Maine in Orono on Monday.
John McConnell (right) and Gabe Mahoney of Falmouth try to keep their windmill upright during the DeepCwind Consortium's Windstorm Challenge 2012 at the University of Maine in Orono on Monday. Buy Photo

ORONO, Maine — Numerous high and middle school students descended on the University of Maine campus Friday for the fourth annual Maine Wind Blade Challenge and the DeepCwind Consortium’s Windstorm Challenge.

Hundreds of students and teachers from more than 40 schools throughout the state gathered at the New Balance Student Recreation Center for the competition, which kicked off Friday morning and concluded around 4 p.m.

The challenges featured competitions for middle and high school students to design, build, implement and test wind power technology components similar to those used in a UMaine research program in deepwater and offshore wind power.

Susan J. Hunter, UMaine senior vice president for academic affairs, kicked off the ceremony with a keynote address while activities began with students testing components in the recreation center swimming pool.

The Windstorm Challenge is a middle and high school invention competition focusing on deepwater offshore wind technology.

The challenge asks teams to design and construct a floating platform for a scale model wind turbine, then create a thorough business plan and sales pitch.

The Wind Blade Challenge, a program developed by the Maine Composites Alliance in partnership with the Advanced Structures and Composites Center and the Maine Wind Industry Initiative, matches high school students with composites manufacturers in Maine to research, design and manufacture model wind blades.

The challenge culminates in a competition to see which team invented the most efficient wind blade.

All winning team members who go on to attend UMaine receive a $20,000 paid internship at the Advanced Structures and Composites Center.

Winners from the competitions are as follows:

Windstorm Challenge:

Overall 1st Place — Team MMA, Madison Area Memorial High School

Overall 2nd Place — Ben Danh Joe Alex, Madison Area Memorial High School

Overall 3rd Place — Seahawks, Boothbay Region High School

Overall 4th Place — Oober and the Goober, Middle School of the Kennebunks

Overall 5th Place — The Wok, Winthrop High School

Stability 1st Place — The Wok, Winthrop High School

Stability 2nd Place — Team MMA, Madison Area Memorial High School

Stability 3rd Place — W.I.B. – Seal Team 3, Old Town High School

Stability 4th Place — Lyndsay Marcus Hannah Cody, Madison Area Memorial High School

Stability 5th Place — Seahawk, Boothbay Region High School.

Wind Blade Challenge:

1st Place — Easton High School

2nd Place — Presque Isle High School Team No. 3

3rd Place — Mt. Blue High School

People’s Choice Award — Orono High School

Wind Blade Challenge Teacher of the Year — John McDonald of Foster Technology Center

Wind Blade Challenge Composite Partner of the Year — The Boat School of Eastport

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