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Massachusetts and Texas win federal funds for wind technology centers

Massachusetts and Texas, in projects backed by their public colleges, were selected to receive federal support to build wind technology testing centers, U.S. Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman said Monday.

Each $20 million project will receive up to $2 million from the U.S. Department of Energy to test equipment to develop large-scale wind blade testing centers, Bodman said.

Many states have been clamoring to capitalize on the possible economic growth associated with wind farms and renewable energy, while President Bush has promoted initiatives to reduce the nation’s dependence on foreign oil.

”These two testing facilities represent an important next step in the expansion of competitiveness of the U.S. domestic wind energy industry,” Bodman said in a prepared statement in advance of a news conference with Gov. Deval Patrick at the Statehouse.

Selected for the federal funds are the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Partnership and the Lone Star Wind Alliance.

The Massachusetts project involves building a center along Boston Harbor. The partnership includes the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, the University of Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Port Authority, and state agencies.

The Lone Star Wind Alliance proposes a test facility in Ingleside, Texas. The group includes several public colleges in Texas, as well as Montana State University, Stanford University, New Mexico State University, Old Dominion University, Houston Advanced Research Center, BP, DOW, Huntsman, and Shell Wind.

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