Thursday, October 11, 2012

Wind turbine placement – Basic tips

Having adequate wind energy resources is only a first step toward making your wind energy project economically viable. The other, equally important factor is choosing the perfect location for your wind turbine. Here are some basic tips you may find helpful when searching for the right location to install your wind turbine on.

First thing you should do is find the location where there are constant high winds. Without the frequent high winds you might as well forget about achieving desirable efficiency, and your wind turbine will not provide you with an expected output.

There are also some other factors which people tend to forget when installing wind turbines. They include the availability of transmission lines, value of energy to be produced, cost of land acquisition, land use considerations. Last but not the least, you should also think about the environmental impact, because large wind turbines can lead to bird killings if not properly equipped (with radars).

Wind turbine with large blades

In order not to forget all these factors wind energy developers today use many specialized software applications which evaluate the impact of these major factors on a given site. Every single factor counts and neglecting just one can lead to multi-million losses over the years so wind developers want to be on the safe side. However, even these software applications aren't 100% accurate, so mistake is sadly always possible.

Wind power density is term that needs to receive special attention in this article. Wind power density refers to a calculation of the effective power of the wind at a particular site, and is measured in watts per square meter. Wind power density is important because it gives wind energy developers a clear indicators on how much energy is available at a certain site for conversion by a wind turbine, helping them estimate the economics of each new wind energy project.

In United States, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory has even classified wind power density into ascending classes. The larger the wind power density is at certain location, the higher it is rated by class.

Wind energy software applications are being constantly improved so they can give the best possible results in determining efficiency and economics of new wind energy project.

Wind energy is already one of the most cost-competitive renewable energy sources and choosing the perfect location for new wind energy project means further improving wind energy economics.