2012-03-01 / Editorial

The sun, the bridge and the wind turbine

There has been quite a bit of debate over whether the town should build a wind turbine at Taylor Point. The point of the exercise would be to generate electricity and sell it to National Grid, thus offsetting some of the town’s utility expense.

There are several different arguments against the proposal. We will not wade into the pros and cons of the effort right now.

Those opposed to the location say that shadow flicker from the turbine’s massive blades will have a detrimental impact on motorists.

The concept of shadow flicker has been a bit hard for many to grasp. The sun’s angle and location in the sky changes with the season. Islander Mick Cochran recently shared with us this neat sun calculator that is imposed over the top of Google maps. Using this clever web device, one can determine the exact location of the sun by date in relation to the proposed wind turbine, the Newport Pell Bridge and Route 138.

Called Sun Calc, the Google device was programmed by Vladimir Agafonkin of Kiev, Ukraine.

Here is the link to SunCalc: http://suncalc.net/#/41.5039,-71.3443,14/2012.06.21/19:20

If you want an easy link to the sun calculator, just go to JamestownPress.com and you can link directly.

— Jeff McDonough

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