Articles filed under Technology from UK
With regard to renewable energy, the attitude of the Assembly Government once again never ceases to amaze me. ...the Assembly Government is obsessed with the totally discredited, useless wind farm technology. In contrast, the highly predictable, reliable tidal power would be a very attractive carbon-free commodity on the electricity spot price market indeed.
THE State Government's five mini wind turbines were put on city roofs as a political exercise and will not work effectively, a key association says. Alternative Technology Association SA branch president Alan Strickland has offered to put the Government in touch with experts who are prepared to assist with proper placement of the turbines. "I believe this has been a political exercise that wasn't properly thought out," he said. ...Each turbine is supposed to produce 1.5kW - or between a third to a half of a household's electricity requirements - under the right conditions.
A new generation of super-size wind farm could be on its way to a field near you. General Electric is developing wind turbines with blades longer than the tip-to-tip wingspan of a jumbo jet. In a move likely to dismay activists who view wind farms as a blot on the landscape, the American company has taken the wraps off a project to develop power-generating windmills with blades of 70 metres - some 75% longer than the typical existing length of 40 metres. ...There was a hostile reaction yesterday from British campaigners who have fought wind farms on the grounds of their appearance, noise and economic viability. Angela Kelly, chairman of the pressure group Country Guardian, said she was "horrified" by jumbo jet-sized windmill blades and described the prospect as an "absolute disaster".
MEMBERS of the public have the opportunity to hear first hand about the results of a study that looks at the capacity for wind energy in the south and west of Berwick-upon-Tweed area of Northumberland. ...The study used the award-winning methodology developed to assess the landscape capacity to absorb wind development, which can be used to help inform decisions on planning applications.
THE nightmare of digging coal underground, suffered by generations of Welsh colliers, could soon be a thing of the past with Wales tipped to benefit from a new mining technology. Experts claim underground coal gasification could create tens of thousands of jobs across Britain, particularly in coal-rich places like Wales. The process involves drilling bore holes into coal seams, pushing steam and oxygen into one hole and drawing out the hot gas from another. It means not a single lump of solid coal would leave the ground. ..."Wind farms are definitely not the answer but clean coal definitely could be. There is enough underground to satisfy the UK's energy needs for many years."
... wind energy farms are not a simple panacea for the country's energy problems. Last week the Beatrice turbines were being serviced but, if they had been operational, they would not have been turning. The North Sea's winds were virtually non-existent, meaning no power would have been generated. Opponents say such variability of output is a drawback of wind energy. But O'Brien insisted: 'If we can build big turbines far away from the shore, they will cause minimum upset and disruption. This is their future and that is why the Beatrice project is so important.'
Tidal power generated from more than 200 turbines in a 10-mile barrage across the Severn estuary could provide nearly 5% of Britain's energy for 120 years ...one of the most ambitious civil engineering challenges in the world, would significantly affect the visual and marine environment more than 30 miles around it and have mixed long term economic and ecological impacts, according to a report from the Sustainable Development Commission (SDC).
Clipper's latest turbine concept, which is expected to move into the testing phase in 2009 or 2010, is based around a 7.5 megawatt machine. The turbine, which would be placed on a 115metre-high tower and have a diameter of 150m, is designed to be located offshore, where winds tend to be stronger and planning restrictions less strict. But Mr Dehlsen [Clipper's CEO] is realistic about the limits of wind power to replace carbon-based energy sources such as coal, oil and gas. "The US Department of Energy said that you would need to cover four states with wind farms to supply America's energy needs," he admits. So while wind has a role to play, Mr Dehlsen accepts that any genuine attempt to tackle climate change must be much more holistic.
Clipper Windpower shares had the wind taken out of their sails this morning after the wind turbine manufacturer revealed problems with the quality of components used in its turbines. Clipper said problems with drivetrain assemblies have temporarily slowed turbine shipments.
Tidal power pioneers in the North-East yesterday set out their stall in the "green" battle with wind farms. Inventors such as former Swan Hunter naval architect Graham Mackie and his Evopod are bidding for a slice of a £50m Government fund to develop electricity from the ebb and flow of the tide. While battles have raged over the building of wind farms in the region, using tidal and wave power has lagged behind. But that changed yesterday when the only independent large-scale tidal testing facility in Europe went into operation.
This may be the moment, senior ministers say, to capitalise on one of Britain's greatest assets, the 45ft tide that races through the Severn estuary, making it the second best place in the world - after Canada's Bay of Fundy - to harness tidal energy. By building a barrage, they hope to be able to meet a large chunk of Britain's electricity needs from a single renewable, reliable source. It is just one of a number of clean energy technologies they want to employ to keep the lights on, while cutting back the pollution that causes global warming.
A WEEK before the government publishes its long-awaited energy white paper, two of the consortium looking to develop clean coal technology have announced that they will move forward with their plans. The first to jump was Scottish Power, which said it was moving to the final feasibility study of a scheme to revamp Longannet.
The plans for the two Fife power plants involve the replacement of the current boilers with what are known as super-critical boilers, which will cut greenhouse gas emissions by 20%. The technology burns coal at ultra-high temperatures and pressures. A further phase of the scheme will see carbon capture technology fitted. This will take CO2 emissions and feed them into coal seams.
Energy giant BP revealed yesterday that it had brought a new partner into the project for a world-first carbon-capture and storage scheme at Peterhead. International mining group Rio Tinto of the UK has formed a new company with BP to develop decarbonised energy projects around the world. The hydrogen-fuelled power projects planned for the north-east and California will become part of the new jointly-owned firm called Hydrogen Energy.
Plans to clean up two of the most polluting power plants in the UK were revealed by ScottishPower yesterday. The £1billion proposals involve installing new turbines and boilers to cut carbon emissions by a fifth at Longannet power station, in Fife, and Cockenzie, just outside Edinburgh. The new "supercritical" turbines and boilers would burn coal at ultra-high temperatures and pressures. A feasibility study into the project was revealed yesterday as First Minister Alex Salmond visited Longannet on his first official engagement.
Plans have been drawn up to upgrade the North-East's first wind farm with bigger and more powerful turbines. The Great Eppleton site near Hetton-le-Hole was installed by Amec Wind 10 years ago and is one of the few sites to use two-bladed turbines. These are now considered to be an ageing technology and one of the site's four turbines has been reduced to one blade.
Tom Shelley reports on a forward-looking area of heavy engineering where Britain still leads the world Within the next few months, the world's first megawatt tidal flow turbine is to be installed and commissioned in Northern Ireland.
Chanellor Gordon Brown plans to invest up to £600m to develop 'carbon capture' technology to transform coal into a clean fuel by piping harmful extracts into caverns under the North Sea. He wants Britain to take the lead in capturing climate-changing carbon dioxide and believes there is a multi-billion pound market in India and the Far East for UK expertise. The Treasury has asked San Francisco-based engineer PB Power to investigate the project, find suitable potential partners and recommend whether investment is worthwhile. A decision is expected by the end of the year. Financial Mail understands the Government is impressed with a plan by Centrica, owner of British Gas, to build a 'clean' coal-powered station in Teesside. This would be the first new coal-fired power station in the UK since 1974.
PUTTING a wind turbine on the roof of your house - like Tory leader David Cameron - is a waste of time, according to experts. The turbines, which cost at least £1,500, are next to useless in cities because there's not enough wind to make them work. Dr Luke Myers, of the Sustainable Energy Group, said: "Putting them in places where there's no wind is a fool's errand really. "No one wants to spend £1,500 on a turbine which doesn't work." Wind speeds at house roof level in a city like London, where Cameron lives, are only around 4.6 metres a second. But turbines sold by stores such as B&Q are designed to work at 12.5 metres a second. Brain Mark, on the Department of Trade and Industry Renewables Advisory Board, said the benefits had been "oversold" by green campaigners. He added: "It would be wonderful - if it worked." Home solar roof panels used to heat water are often a better bet and recoup costs in 10 years.
Several of Britain’s growing fleet of wind farms ground to a halt on Thursday as severe gales battered the country. The storms, which caused transport chaos and left hundreds of thousands without electricity, proved too much for some wind farms. Most turbines, which are intentionally sited in some of the windiest parts of the country, automatically stop spinning for safety reasons when wind speeds exceed 25 meters per second, or about 55 miles per hour.