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The wind blows where, when it wants

A few months ago, the Dallas area experienced rolling brownouts when a front moved through and the wind died unexpectedly, causing a large amount of wind-generated power to die out. Power plants had to scramble to get their gas- and coal-fired generators up to speed to offset the lost power when the wind generators dropped off. That's a problem because generating stations and their equipment do not take drastic changes in load easily, especially the big coal-fired plants. Equipment has to warm up, and keeping them "on standby" requires energy, in addition to "wear and tear."

People aren't saying that turbine blades need to be turned electrically when wind dies. They are saying that power coming from other sources has to take the place of the wind-generated power on the electric power grid when wind dies, and it does die!

A few months ago, the Dallas area experienced rolling brownouts when a front moved through and the wind died unexpectedly, causing a large amount of wind-generated power to die out. Power plants had to scramble to get their gas- and coal-fired generators up to speed to offset the lost power when the wind generators dropped off.

That's a problem because generating stations and their equipment do not take drastic changes in load easily, especially the big coal-fired plants. Equipment has to warm up, and keeping them "on standby" requires energy, in addition to "wear and tear."

To Watson's second point, nobody said wind energy wasn't worth pursuing, just not to the degree that Boone Pickens proposes.

I like windmills, and have considered one for my house (although the economics aren't there). The point was that the Pickens Plan won't work because of the magnitude of the electric load he wants to supply with wind.

He wants to generate 20 percent of the... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

People aren't saying that turbine blades need to be turned electrically when wind dies. They are saying that power coming from other sources has to take the place of the wind-generated power on the electric power grid when wind dies, and it does die!

A few months ago, the Dallas area experienced rolling brownouts when a front moved through and the wind died unexpectedly, causing a large amount of wind-generated power to die out. Power plants had to scramble to get their gas- and coal-fired generators up to speed to offset the lost power when the wind generators dropped off.

That's a problem because generating stations and their equipment do not take drastic changes in load easily, especially the big coal-fired plants. Equipment has to warm up, and keeping them "on standby" requires energy, in addition to "wear and tear."

To Watson's second point, nobody said wind energy wasn't worth pursuing, just not to the degree that Boone Pickens proposes.

I like windmills, and have considered one for my house (although the economics aren't there). The point was that the Pickens Plan won't work because of the magnitude of the electric load he wants to supply with wind.

He wants to generate 20 percent of the power needed from all sources from wind farms in the Midwest. From an engineering and reliability standpoint, it won't work until we figure out how to store the energy when the wind is blowing, and be able to use it when the wind stops.


Source: http://www.amarillo.com/sto...

AUG 27 2008
http://www.windaction.org/posts/16770-the-wind-blows-where-when-it-wants
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