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Tabb Wins Big in KidWind Competition
By Nancy E. Sheppard (Yorktown Crier | Poquoson Post)

KidWind imageTABB – Students from Tabb Middle School placed first in the National KidWind Challenge held in Houston (Texas) on May 21 – 23, 2019 during the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) Trade Show.

The KidWind Project, developed in 2013, seeks to engage students in learning more about wind power by developing and testing their own wind turbines. The national competition brings together students from all over the United States (who placed regionally) to display their own creative solutions for wind energy.

The Tabb Middle School team, named "Gone with the Wind,” was comprised of Katelyn Wiltz, Alice Fang, Jacoby Melton, and Kyle Ray. Under the expert guidance of high school mentor, Daniel Taminger, coached by Tracy Buckley, and with the support of a volunteer NASA engineer, placed second in the regional competition held in Virginia Beach, and went on to compete at Nationals in Houston.

The students are judged on several different components: turbine blade design, power output and efficiency, and their blades’ success and failures due to the engineering of their design. Students participate in a challenging knowledge quiz on wind energy as well as two "spontaneous” instant challenges. The competition also consistent of four wind tunnels to place their turbine in: slow, medium, and high speeds, as well as a yawing tunnel.

The Tabb Middle School team competed against fifty-two other middle school teams from thirty different states. "Gone with the Wind” produced nearly twice as much power as the other teams in the division. In addition to receiving first place, they also were awarded a Power Output Award.

Tabb Middle School teacher and team coach, Tracy Buckley, said, "The best part as their coach was seeing the support that they gave to other teams. There were a few teams that had catastrophic failures and were not going to be able to complete and these students offered their help and shared supplies so that they could stay in the competition.” Ms. Buckley expresses her extreme pride for her team’s hard work and dedication.


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