Reappearance of wind energy

Reappearance of wind energy

In the late 1960s, wind energy was again valued. The book “Silent Spring” (Carson, 1962) made people understand the impact of industrial development on the environment. The book “Limits to Growth” (Meadows et al., 1972) shows in the same mood that unrestricted development will inevitably lead to disasters or changes. People recognize that fossil fuels are the culprit. At this time, the potential danger of nuclear energy is also for the public. As I know, the discussion of these topics forms the background of an environmental movement, which began to advocate clean energy.

In the United States, although people continue to pay attention to environmental issues, there was no development in new energy before the oil crisis in the 1970s. In the Carter administration, a new effort was to develop alternative energy sources, one of which was wind energy. . The US Department of Energy (DOE) has initiated a series of projects to promote the development of this technology. Most of the funds are invested in the development of large-scale wind turbines, and many results have been obtained. These wind turbines include the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) MOD-O type 100 kW (38 m diameter), and the Boeing MOD of the United States. -5B 3.2MW (98m diameter), during which many inspiring results have been achieved, but a commercial project has not yet been obtained. MOE also supports the development of some small wind turbines and has established test facilities in Rocky Flats, Colorado. Some small wind turbine manufacturing plants appeared, but they were not established until the late 1970s.

Due to the stimulation of the management structure and supply of power companies, major opportunities have emerged. The US Federal Government passed the Public Power Company Management Policy Act in 1978, which requires power companies to: (1) allow wind turbines to be connected to the grid; (2) Pay the “avoidance cost” per kilowatt-hour (kWh) of wind power and the cost of connecting to the grid.

The actual cost avoidance is controversial, but in many states, power companies pay enough money to make wind power generation meaningful; in addition, the federal government and some states provide investment tax cuts to people who install wind turbines, such as It has the best wind farms in California and provides the best incentive policies. Now you can install some small wind turbines in groups to form a wind farm, and connect them to the grid to make a profit.

In the past few years, California’s wind power demand has increased dramatically. Thousands of wind turbines have been installed in California, especially in the Eltamont Pass, San Jonno Pass and Tiha Chapi areas. A typical wind farm is shown in Figure 1, with a total installed capacity of 1500MW; however, the early wind power demand in California was full of difficulties. Many wind turbines were still prototypes and were still unable to meet the requirements; especially when the actual performance of the wind turbines could not be proven such as the manufacturing plant. When promised, investment tax cuts (as opposed to production tax cuts) proved to be not the best way to encourage development and implementation of production; when the Reagan administration abolished federal tax cuts in the 1980s, demand for wind turbines dropped sharply.

Reappearance of wind energy
California wind farm

Wind turbines installed in California are not limited to being manufactured in the United States. In fact, a large number of Danish wind turbines appeared in California wind farms soon, and their wind turbines also had some problems, but in general, the quality of their products was better than those made in the United States. After the gust, the dust settled, most American manufacturers withdrew, and Danish manufacturers were reorganizing and merging to find a way to survive.

In the 1990s, a decade saw the death of the largest American manufacturer Kennetech Windpower (1996), and the manufacturing center of wind turbines moved to Europe, especially Denmark and Germany; global warming and concerns about nuclear power, in the United States and Other countries have strong demand for wind power; in the 21st century, some major European suppliers also set up manufacturing plants in other countries, such as China, India and the United States.

Recently, the largest commercial wind turbine capacity has increased from 25 kW to 6 MW, and the planned capacity to reach 10 MW is under design. As shown in Figure 2, the total installed capacity of the world reached 115,000 MW in 2009 and was mainly installed in Europe; offshore Type wind turbines are also actively developing in Europe. By 2008, a total of 2000 MW has been installed. Design standards and certification procedures have been established, so the reliability and performance are far beyond those of wind turbines in the 1970s and 1980s; even if there is no incentive policy, The cost of wind energy can already compete with conventional energy in some respects. In countries with incentive policies, wind energy is developing very strongly.

Reappearance of wind energy
Typical wind turbine capacity, height and rotor diameter
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