Wind Turbine Installations

In the United States in 2007 the generating capacity of the wind industry expanded by 30% and the consulting firm, Emerging Energy Associates, estimates that between 2007 and 2015 some $65 billion will be invested in wind power. Shekk and TXU Corporation are planning to build the world's largest (3 gW) wind farm in the Texas panhandle. An even larger (4 gW) farm costing about $10 billion is planned on a 150,000 acre area, also in the Texas panhandle. This project is called the "Pama Wind Project" and will be built by Mesa Power LLP. The first phase is a 1 gW unit consisting of 667 turbines, and the total project is expected to be completed by 2014. Another large project is the 2 gW $8 billion wind farm being built by Spain's Iberdrola. This project will double the capacity of the company's operating plants in the United States. The world's first floating offshore wind turbine with a peak production of 2.3 mW is being built in Karmay, Norway. One of the world's largest wind parks was built by the Vattenfall Power Company between Sweden and Denmark.

The two largest wind farm operators in the world are Iberdrola of Spain and FPL Energy in the United States. FPL operates 6,400 wind turbines on 50 wind farms in 15 states and generates electricity for 1.2 million homes. There is a lot of activity as corporations are discovering the financial potentials of wind technology. Energias of Portugal has recently purchased Horizon Wind Energy in the United States, Acciona acquired EcoEnergy, Iberdrola bought CPV Wind Ventures, and the list goes on. A new 75 mW wind farm is planned in North Dakota, windmills are proposed to be installed on the bridges and skyscrapers of New York City, and a 450 mW wind power plant is planned for Clyde in Scotland.

American Electric Power is installing a 6 mW wind farm with battery storage for $27 million, or at a unit cost of $4,500/kW, using NGK Insulator's sodium-sulfur batteries made in Japan. The rationale for the installation is that although the wind turbines operate mostly at night when the value of electricity is low, by storing the electricity generated until the next peak period, its value is much increased.

In Burlington, Vermont, at the Department of Public Works' hydrogen fuel station, wind turbines and an H-series PEM electrolyzer from Proton Energy Systems are used to produce 12 kg/d of H2. Air Products and Chemicals participated in the design of this wind-to-hydrogen installation.

Wind-based hydrogen generators are in operation in Patagonia, Argentina, Spain, Norway at Utsira Island, at Hovik, Minnesota, and in Canada at Prince Edward Island. The "Wind2H2 Project" in Boulder, Colorado, links 5 kW wind turbines to water splitters generating 20 kg of H2 a day. This H2 is stored as a gas at 240 bar (3,500 psig). PEM water splitter units of 5 kW size are available from Proton Energy, and units with 50 kW capacity alkaline electrolyzers are available from Teledyne.

Renewable Energy 101

Renewable Energy 101

Renewable energy is energy that is generated from sunlight, rain, tides, geothermal heat and wind. These sources are naturally and constantly replenished, which is why they are deemed as renewable. The usage of renewable energy sources is very important when considering the sustainability of the existing energy usage of the world. While there is currently an abundance of non-renewable energy sources, such as nuclear fuels, these energy sources are depleting. In addition to being a non-renewable supply, the non-renewable energy sources release emissions into the air, which has an adverse effect on the environment.

Get My Free Ebook

Post a comment