15 April 2010

Interconnection key to reliable wind power

A recent study from the University of Delaware’s College of Earth, Ocean and Environment shows that a network of offshore wind sites can be managed to ensure consistent power generation from the system. [Full report in pdf]

One of the major problems with single wind farm sites is the unpredictable nature of generation.  Power only flows when the wind blows and there is no guarantee when it blow or if the wind will be strong enough to generate power.

Researchers at CEOE analysed five years of data from sites stretching 2500 kilometres along the east coast of the United States. By simulating an interconnection they demonstrated that the system could provide consistent, sustainable power.  While other studies have shown the benefit of interconnection, the key to success in this case lay in the wide geographic dispersion of the wind farms.