Twisters vs. turbines: What if a tornado swept through a wind farm?

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Turbines are popping up all over tornado alley — nearly 1,400 in windswept Nolan County alone.

Every year, about 1,000 twisters crop up across the country.

But no one knows what would happen if a high-intensity tornado struck a turbine.

A typical machine’s rotor weighs 47 tons and could nearly reach across the length of a football field.

“Can a turbine blade come off the turbine and fly in the air, and how far will it go? We don’t have an answer to that right now,” said Texas Tech University professor Kishor Mehta, an expert in windstorm structural damage.

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