Windfarm visit a hit with Buchan college renewables students

Pictured are students Jonasz Jachlewski, Stuart Johnston, Liam Marr, Connor Soutar, Lewis West, Rebecca Martindale
Pictured are students Jonasz Jachlewski, Stuart Johnston, Liam Marr, Connor Soutar, Lewis West, Rebecca Martindale

Students from North East Scotland College’s PDA Renewables class recently visited St John’s Wells Wind Farm in Fyvie to gain firsthand experience of wind technology in action.

John Sleigh, Managing Director, shared insights with the students as they toured the site.

Gareth Davies, lecturer in Engineering, Technology, and Renewables, said: “It’s important that students not only learn the theory behind these technologies, but also have an opportunity to see them in action.

“At St. John’s Wells wind farm the class were able to view the wind turbines in operation, stand inside the tower of one and observe the control panels, actually witnessing the correlation between wind speed and power generation, also gaining insight into grid connectivity, and the related business model. 

“I would like to say a big thank you to John Sleigh for taking time out of his busy schedule to show and discuss the technology with the group.”

Student Rebecca Martindale, who is enrolled on the PDA Renewables course in addition to her HND in Mechanical Engineering, thoroughly enjoyed the visit.

Rebecca commented: “I’ve written a paper as part of my HND which contains everything I have learnt from the trip.

“It includes new-build and operational wind farm information and some of the important financial and safety considerations.”

Rebecca aims to take this a step further, with help from her lecturers, by installing a small wind turbine at Fraserburgh Campus over the coming months as part of her HND Project.

The wind turbine and associated systems including solar panels, are to be used to generate data related to wind speeds and direction, sunlight and electricity generation, and will beused by subsequent groups studying the PDA in Renewables.

The PDA in Renewables is an additional course at higher national level, run at North EastScotland College’s Fraserburgh Campus. 

Developed with students’ emergence from college into a fast expanding industry in mind, it covers all aspects of renewables, from an overview of energy use to specific technologies related to the industry, including power generation using wind turbines. 

The PDA in Renewables is offered not only to current full time students, but also an evening class is available for anyone. For those studying the PDA in Renewables along with an HND in Mechanical Engineering, there is an articulation option into a degree course in Energy and Sustainability with the Open University.

NESCol appreciate close working relationships with companies and employers. These are essential to enhance the student experience.