You may have considered pursuing a career in renewable energy, particularly in wind, but wondered if it was right for you. You may wonder how much wind technicians make on average, or what employment trends looks like.
To help answer these common questions, Ecotech Institute put together an eBook called “Ditch the Desk: The Complete eBook To Starting a Career in Wind Energy”. In it, you'll find information to help answer some of these most common questions, but in the meantime, here is one look at a day-in-the-life of a wind technician.
What's a Day Like as a Wind Technician?
Wake up before the sun, grab something to eat and hit the road. You cannot climb wind turbines in high winds and wind speeds are typically highest in the late afternoon, so you need to get an early start.
Wind farms are typically located in beautiful countryside away from cities and residents. As a wind turbine technician, you will most likely take some dirt roads on the way to work, so you will need a vehicle that can make it in all types of weather.
Every morning at the headquarters. you will have a meeting with the whole crew, typically around 7 a.m. You will be grouped into teams as necessary, usually at least three-person teams. Your team will be assigned a specific job task for that day, which can range from scheduled maintenance to repairing unexpected failures, typically working on one turbine per day.
Gather the Gear
Before you set off, you may need to do some research on the job task, get parts from the warehouse, get special tools from the tool room, or even get on a computer to check on the condition of the wind turbine you will be working on. All of the steps you take require documentation; checking out tools, timecards, recording conditions of the wind turbine, etc.
Drive to the Site
Your team will then drive to the turbine in a work truck. Once you have reached the wind turbine it needs to be shut off and then you can load all of your tools and supplies onto the electric winch to be lifted into the top of the tower. Then typically everyone climbs a 300-foot ladder to get to where the repairs and maintenance work needs to be done.
Start the Climb
The real work begins once everyone, and all supplies, have been moved into the Nacelle, or the top box of a wind turbine. You will be working by yourself or with a partner for specific tasks for the rest of the day. You will most likely eat lunch sitting on a piece of equipment in the Nacelle or up on the roof and the views can be some of the best around!
Wrap it Up
At the end of the day you clean everything on the way down, load up the truck and turn your wind turbine back on. Once back at the headquarters you check everything in and finish all your documentation and check to see if your wind turbine is up and running. It's a rewarding, unique profession that continues to see growth. To learn more visit Ecotech Institute's Wind Energy Technology page.