Other than storage of the wind energy, one of the main problems of wind power systems is efficiency. When there is no sufficient wind, the system cannot generate adequate power for the consumers to use.
So how can this be improved? Researchers from VTT Research Center of Technology in Finland have a solution.
By developing technology that enables higher towers and larger rotors, that is longer blades, than previous wind turbines, the efficiency becomes higher.
This renewables breakthrough also allows fewer restrictions in the location of wind turbines. Before, they are often planted in open locations on the ground or in off-shore areas, but now they can be built in forested areas using the technology.
One downside of this new-generation wind turbines is the significant increase in investment costs. However, the researchers claim that the benefits will also increase fivefold in terms of the potential offered compared to the older technology.
Photo via Radio Kerry
Using the demand in Finland as the benchmark, they said that the new system can cover the whole country’s electricity consumption at 86 TWh, while previous technology is only limited to around 16TWh.
Research scientist Erkka Rinne of VTT said, “Sufficient wind power is available in Finland. Technology and land use restrictions affect the available wind power potential, i.e. annual energy production.
“The key issue is to decide on the extent to which this potential is realized. In practice, wind power is intended to cover part of electricity consumption. Large-scale use of wind power will require new kinds of solutions throughout the electric power system.”
Finland is among the top countries which rely heavily on renewables, particularly wind. Several investments are being made in wind power, which makes this new technology by the VTT even more exciting.
Source: Wind Power Engineering