Library filed under Technology from USA

Idaho Power releases study on impact of small wind farms

It takes energy to maintain energy from small wind farms. That was the conclusion of Idaho Power’s study on the impact of wind power, which was released Wednesday. Among other findings, the Operational Impact report said that small wind farms - those which produce 10 megawatts or fewer - require the assistance of hydroelectric power to compensate for generating fluctuations caused by changes in wind speed. Idaho Power uses its hydroelectric sources to provide additional energy when small wind farms are unable to stay at predetermined power levels. The report estimates that it costs Idaho Power $10.72 per megawatt hour to offset such fluctuations. The utility wants wind farm operators to pay that expense.
8 Feb 2007

Power suppliers attack their rivals’ technology

In an effort to secure a lucrative deal to supply Delmarva Power with electricity, three power companies are calling their rivals’ technology risky and potentially harmful to the environment, according to documents obtained by The News Journal. The conflict highlights two innovative but domestically unproven technologies. NRG Energy wants to add a coal gasification facility, perhaps with new environmental safeguards, to its Indian River plant. Bluewater Wind hopes to put up a wind farm in the Atlantic Ocean off the Delaware coast............Bluewater Wind. marked as “confidential” large portions of its filing, including information on electrical capacity. NRG has raised questions about the wind company’s ability to provide electricity during the hottest summer days. But Bluewater Wind removed details about its projected seasonal capacity from its filing.
4 Feb 2007

Operational Impacts of Integrating Wind Generation into Idaho Power's Existing Resource Portfolio

Idaho_power_wind_integration_study_thumb The objective of this study is to assess the costs that could be incurred by Idaho Power in modifying its operations at the Hells Canyon Complex for “integrating” or incorporating wind energy onto its system. The intermittent and unpredictable nature of wind generation requires a utility to have generating resources available which can increase or decrease generation on short notice in order to keep the interconnected power system balanced. While hydroelectric power plants are well suited for performing this function, there are operational impacts and costs associated with operating Idaho Power hydroelectric plants in a manner that maintains reliability and facilitates integration of energy from wind generation facilities. The issues surrounding the integration of wind generation on interconnected power systems are numerous and complex. This study provides a first step toward understanding those issues.
1 Feb 2007

Plant to store wind power

Iowa’s municipal utilities announced plans Friday to build a $200 million power plant west of Dallas Center that will store wind energy in the ground and use it to generate up to 268 megawatts of electricity. The announcement is a culmination of more than four years of study and research by the Iowa Association of Municipal Utilities and others, although operation of the plant is still several years away. Construction would begin in 2009 with completion expected in 2011, said John Bilsten, general manager of Algona Municipal Utilities and vice president of the newly formed Iowa Stored Energy Park Agency. Only two similar wind storage plants are in existence, one in Germany and the other in Alabama. Both are about half the size of the plant planned for Dallas County, Bilsten said.
6 Jan 2007

It’s Free, Plentiful and Fickle

Wind, almost everybody’s best hope for big supplies of clean, affordable electricity, is turning out to have complications. Engineers have cut the price of electricity derived from wind by about 80 percent in the last 20 years, setting up this renewable technology for a major share of the electricity market. But for all its promise, wind also generates a big problem: because it is unpredictable and often fails to blow when electricity is most needed, wind is not reliable enough to assure supplies for an electric grid that must be prepared to deliver power to everybody who wants it — even when it is in greatest demand........At a recent discussion of clean energy technologies held at General Electric’s research center in Niskayuna, N.Y, Dan W. Reicher, a former assistant secretary of energy for conservation and renewable energy, predicted that renewables, led by wind, could reach 20 percent of demand in the next decade or two. President Bush has also said that wind could supply 20 percent of the nation’s electricity. But Mr. Reicher drew a quick response from James E. Rogers, chief executive of Cinergy, one of the nation’s largest utilities, and chairman of the Edison Electric Institute, the industry’s trade association. “I love his optimism,” Mr. Rogers said. “But unfortunately, I have to deliver electricity every day.”
28 Dec 2006

OSU Develops “Micro” Wind Turbine for Green Buildings

An Oregon State University engineering professor has helped design a new “micro” wind turbine that can be mounted along the edges of building roofs to generate electricity. The new small-scale turbine design could revolutionize the wind power industry, with rows of small rooftop turbines enabling power generation in urban and suburban settings, instead of only from large, towering, traditional wind farms in rural areas.
22 Dec 2006

OSU Develops “Micro” Wind Turbine for Green Buildings

An Oregon State University engineering professor has helped design a new “micro” wind turbine that can be mounted along the edges of building roofs to generate electricity. The new small-scale turbine design could revolutionize the wind power industry, with rows of small rooftop turbines enabling power generation in urban and suburban settings, instead of only from large, towering, traditional wind farms in rural areas.
22 Dec 2006

Less For More: The Rube Goldberg Nature of Industrial Wind Development

Less_for_more_thumb Rube Goldberg would admire the utter purity of the pretensions of wind technology in pursuit of a safer modern world, claiming to be saving the environment while wreaking havoc upon it. But even he might be astonished by the spin of wind industry spokesmen. Consider the comments made by the American Wind Industry Association.s Christina Real de Azua in the wake of the virtual nonperformance of California.s more than 13,000 wind turbines in mitigating the electricity crisis precipitated by last July.s .heat storm.. .You really don.t count on wind energy as capacity,. she said. .It is different from other technologies because it can.t be dispatched.. (84) The press reported her comments solemnly without question, without even a risible chortle. Because they perceive time to be running out on fossil fuels, and the lure of non-polluting wind power is so seductive, otherwise sensible people are promoting it at any cost, without investigating potential negative consequences-- and with no apparent knowledge of even recent environmental history or grid operations. Eventually, the pedal of wishful thinking and political demagoguery will meet the renitent metal of reality in the form of the Second Law of Thermodynamics (85) and public resistance, as it has in Denmark and Germany. Ironically, support for industrial wind energy because of a desire for reductions in fossil-fueled power and their polluting emissions leads ineluctably to nuclear power, particularly under pressure of relentlessly increasing demand for reliable electricity. Environmentalists who demand dependable power generation at minimum environmental risk should take care about what they wish for, more aware that, with Rube Goldberg machines, the desired outcome is unlikely to be achieved. Subsidies given to industrial wind technology divert resources that could otherwise support effective measures, while uninformed rhetoric on its behalf distracts from the discourse.and political action-- necessary for achieving more enlightened policy.
20 Dec 2006

Less For More: The Rube Goldberg Nature of Industrial Wind Development

Less_for_more_thumb Rube Goldberg would admire the utter purity of the pretensions of wind technology in pursuit of a safer modern world, claiming to be saving the environment while wreaking havoc upon it. But even he might be astonished by the spin of wind industry spokesmen. Consider the comments made by the American Wind Industry Association.s Christina Real de Azua in the wake of the virtual nonperformance of California.s more than 13,000 wind turbines in mitigating the electricity crisis precipitated by last July.s .heat storm.. .You really don.t count on wind energy as capacity,. she said. .It is different from other technologies because it can.t be dispatched.. (84) The press reported her comments solemnly without question, without even a risible chortle. Because they perceive time to be running out on fossil fuels, and the lure of non-polluting wind power is so seductive, otherwise sensible people are promoting it at any cost, without investigating potential negative consequences-- and with no apparent knowledge of even recent environmental history or grid operations. Eventually, the pedal of wishful thinking and political demagoguery will meet the renitent metal of reality in the form of the Second Law of Thermodynamics (85) and public resistance, as it has in Denmark and Germany. Ironically, support for industrial wind energy because of a desire for reductions in fossil-fueled power and their polluting emissions leads ineluctably to nuclear power, particularly under pressure of relentlessly increasing demand for reliable electricity. Environmentalists who demand dependable power generation at minimum environmental risk should take care about what they wish for, more aware that, with Rube Goldberg machines, the desired outcome is unlikely to be achieved. Subsidies given to industrial wind technology divert resources that could otherwise support effective measures, while uninformed rhetoric on its behalf distracts from the discourse.and political action-- necessary for achieving more enlightened policy.
20 Dec 2006

Less For More: The Rube Goldberg Nature of Industrial Wind Development

Less_for_more_thumb Rube Goldberg would admire the utter purity of the pretensions of wind technology in pursuit of a safer modern world, claiming to be saving the environment while wreaking havoc upon it. But even he might be astonished by the spin of wind industry spokesmen. Consider the comments made by the American Wind Industry Association.s Christina Real de Azua in the wake of the virtual nonperformance of California.s more than 13,000 wind turbines in mitigating the electricity crisis precipitated by last July.s .heat storm.. .You really don.t count on wind energy as capacity,. she said. .It is different from other technologies because it can.t be dispatched.. (84) The press reported her comments solemnly without question, without even a risible chortle. Because they perceive time to be running out on fossil fuels, and the lure of non-polluting wind power is so seductive, otherwise sensible people are promoting it at any cost, without investigating potential negative consequences-- and with no apparent knowledge of even recent environmental history or grid operations. Eventually, the pedal of wishful thinking and political demagoguery will meet the renitent metal of reality in the form of the Second Law of Thermodynamics (85) and public resistance, as it has in Denmark and Germany. Ironically, support for industrial wind energy because of a desire for reductions in fossil-fueled power and their polluting emissions leads ineluctably to nuclear power, particularly under pressure of relentlessly increasing demand for reliable electricity. Environmentalists who demand dependable power generation at minimum environmental risk should take care about what they wish for, more aware that, with Rube Goldberg machines, the desired outcome is unlikely to be achieved. Subsidies given to industrial wind technology divert resources that could otherwise support effective measures, while uninformed rhetoric on its behalf distracts from the discourse.and political action-- necessary for achieving more enlightened policy.
20 Dec 2006

Industrial Wind Energy: Ridgeline Footprint and Related Issues

Industrial_wind_energy_ridgeline_footprint_and_related_issues_dec_16_06_thumb This paper examines Vermont Public Interest Research Group’s (VPIRG) assertion that by 2015 industrial wind turbines on 8.8% (or 46 miles) of Vermont’s ridgelines above 2500 feet could provide 20% of Vermont’s electricity needs. (1) The examination compares VPIRG’s proposal- which is predicated on Vermont’s average electricity consumption- with the utility industry’s standard for measuring wind energy’s contribution to system reliability and peak demand. i.e. its capacity credit. This measurement concludes that for wind energy to provide the reliable generating capacity to meet 20% of Vermont’s peak demand industrial wind turbines would require 44% - 88% (or 226-451 miles) of Vermont’s ridgeline above 2500’.
16 Dec 2006

Turbine blades would be tested horizontally

There won’t be a 450-foot-tall windmill spinning over Charlestown after all — but there could be a new 300-foot long, four-story building on a neighborhood wharf for testing wind turbine blades. Based on reports from top state and city officials, the Globe reported yesterday that Governor Mitt Romney’s administration was looking at a Massachusetts Port Authority pier for a potential US Energy Department wind turbine testing facility, including a tower for turbines with blades spinning up to 450 feet above the ground. In fact, the project would only involve a building 300 feet long and 50 feet high where turbine blades up to 230 feet long would be turned on their sides and subjected to engineering and strength tests.
14 Dec 2006

Powerful Wind Storm Damages Wind Turbine

(Pavilion, NY, December 4, 2006) - - Recent gusts were powerful enough to break off the blades of a wind turbine in Genesee County. News 4's Al Vaughters reports the property owner is still picking up the pieces in Pavilion. Steve Rigoni said, "Well, the blade has got to come from Minnesota, so it'll be four or five days before they get here." This is all that's left of Steve Rigoni's wind turbine: three busted-up fiberglass blades and a 140-foot tower. The turbine has been blowing away Steve's electric bills, but Friday's wind storm was just too much.
4 Dec 2006

Operations of Electric Power Systems with High Penetration of Wind Power: Risks and Possible Solutions

Ilic_wind_paper_ieeepes2007invited_thumb This paper provides an assessment of wind power effects on technical and economic performance of today’s electric power systems. While small penetration of wind power is unlikely to cause any qualitative changes, significant percent of wind-generated power will require major rethinking of generation dispatch and automatic generation control, in particular. We summarize technical risks, as well as the economic implications on total cost of providing power to customers. The discussion is presented for both traditional fully regulated utilities and for the portions of the electric power interconnection which are undergoing restructuring. The paper suggests that the ultimate benefit of wind power to the customers will depend to a large extent on how well are today’s operating practices adjusted to make the most out of the available resources, including the intermittent wind power. Moreover, we suggest that an analysis could be done to determine the amount of wind power for a given system beyond which benefits are difficult to capture because of the necessary additional infrastructure cost.
1 Dec 2006

As heat sizzles, growing wind power fizzles

On Aug. 21, when afternoon temperatures in Washington state soared, Avista Corp.’s (AVA) utility division asked customers to cut their electricity use while it scoured the region for power supplies. Utility operators were frustrated, in part, because the company’s supply of wind power was producing nothing, thanks to a lack of wind. Avista wasn’t alone. Throughout the West during that August heat wave, a growing fleet of windmills met triple-digit temperatures with impotence. California’s grid operator was serving up a record amount of power that afternoon, too, while its 2,850 MW of wind turbines were churning out just 112 MW.......What can all these windmills do to help prevent a blackout in a heat wave? Utilities’ estimates of that range widely. When figuring out how to keep the lights on during the coming summer’s hottest day, PJM pencils in 20% of wind capacity for serving peak load. The California Independent System Operator figures 5% will be there. For Texas, which has more windmills than any other state, Ercot counts on just 2.6% of capacity. Avista, like many utilities operating their own grid, doesn’t count on any wind power during the summer peak. As more windmills come on line, overestimating could mean a blackout, while underestimating could mean paying a lot of money for unneeded standby generators.
1 Dec 2006

Designs evolving for wind turbines

Some people say these wind turbines look like corkscrews or a piece of Twizzlers candy. And these uniquely designed wind machines cost about a third the price of conventional wind turbines, according to the Canadian startup company that is building and marketing them. Windaus Energy of Brantford, Ontario, says its wind turbines can be easily scaled for use in residential backyards or large commercial wind farms. In addition to their lower cost, they appear to address some, but not all, of the issues that have riled opponents of wind power. "We have interest from all over the world," said Maurice Deschamps, a former crane operator who is president of Windaus Energy -- pronounced win-DAY-us. "I get it from Argentina, China, India, all over." His wind turbines have no "swoosh" noise and do not kill birds or bats, two problems that have made existing wind-turbine designs controversial, he said. The bird-friendly claim has not been independently verified, and some people are skeptical. Nevertheless, the Windaus turbine doesn't have the typical propeller blades used on conventional wind turbines, such as the ones along the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Somerset County. These blades range in length from about 100 to 300 feet. Instead, Windaus employs a vertical column with three twisting wings made of a light but strong composite material. The wings catch the wind from any direction and operate at lower wind speeds.
26 Nov 2006

http://www.windaction.org/posts?location=USA&p=15&topic=Technology
back to top