View Full Version : Ever more wind turbines to be erected..

9th Feb 2013, 12:29
Thousands of wind turbines to go up as subsidies cut - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/energy/windpower/9858849/Thousands-of-wind-turbines-to-go-up-as-subsidies-cut.html)

Britain is building more wind turbines this year than ever before with more than 1,200 turbines due to start spinning throughout the countryside and around the coast over the next 12 months.

The “dash for wind” has been prompted by a cut in subsidies due this year and an apparent relaxing of the planning rules.

Some 763 turbines are due to be built onshore in 2013, up 60 per cent from last year.

Already there are 4,366 turbines in operation in the UK providing 8.2GW of power, enough to power 4.5 million homes for a year.

There are a further 7,843 turbines that have been approved but are yet to be built, bringing the total due to go up in the UK to more than 10,000.

In the last year the industry has hit new heights, providing 10 per cent of the UK’s electricity needs – when the wind is blowing.

The increase in wind turbines has been attributed to an apparent relaxing of the planning rules.
Last year the approval rate for wind farms went up by 50 per cent, according to industry group Renewable UK.

Despite fears for the countryside, the number of wind farms approved by councils at a local level went up for the first time in five years.
These smaller wind farms or single turbines are often just as controversial as larger developments. A 50KW turbine collapsed in rural Devon earlier this week. And despite the Government’s apparent cooling on the industry, the number of wind farms approved at a national level went up by a fifth.
Renewable UK claim the increase reflects support for the industry.
“This welcome trend is coupled with continued strong support for wind energy, with two thirds of the population in favour of continued development of wind energy. What is more, this support rises in rural areas.”

However, Dr John Constable, director of Renewable Energy Foundation, a UK charity publishing data on the energy sector, said the increase was because subsidies for onshore will be cut by 10 per cent from April 2013.
He said there is a “dash for wind” while the Government continues to pay a subsidy.

“The UK’s wind power deployment on and offshore is way ahead of the learning curve, and needs to slow down to a rational pace to avoid insupportable burdens on the consumer and the risk of major malinvestment the unwinding of which will be painful and embarrassing.”
John Hayes, the Energy Minister, has said that the number of wind farms does not need to go beyond those planned.

The Government has committed to 13GW onshore by 2020, meaning the amount of onshore wind constructed or in planning is nearing the target, and 18GW offshore, meaning thousands more have yet to be built.


9th Feb 2013, 13:39
right now the grid demand is at 45.45GW and wind is providing 0.33GW

U.K. National Grid status (http://www.gridwatch.templar.co.uk/)


9th Feb 2013, 17:46
wind is providing 0.33GW
As Tesco once said 'Every little helps' (tongue firmly in cheek).

10th Feb 2013, 08:38
Brother in Law is an engineer, says they are grossly inefficient and cost more in maintenance than they produce.

10th Feb 2013, 08:43
But that doesn't apply to those who have been sucked into the whole "Green" dogma, efficiency means nothing when "being seen to do something" means everything irrespective of the costs, "science", detriment to local ecology and actual "carbon footprint" of these things when the TRUE costs, both financial and environmental, of these things are taken into account.

glad rag
10th Feb 2013, 09:19
irrespective of the costs, "science", detriment to local ecology and actual "carbon footprint" of these things when the TRUE costs, both financial and environmental BBC News - Sizewell C: EDF 'should provide £100m for improvements' (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-suffolk-17690910)


BBC News - Sellafield clean-up costs hit £67.5bn says report (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-21328915)

Yeah right. :ugh::ugh::ugh::ugh:

tony draper
10th Feb 2013, 09:32
Perhaps the long term effects of radiation have been exaggerated, the wild critters around Chernobyl are apparently thriving,perhaps it was just scientific government propaganda like global warming.:E
As for mutation we dont need radiation to produce them,our town centers pubs are full of them every weekend
Despite Mutations, Chernobyl Wildlife Is Thriving (http://news.nationalgeographic.co.uk/news/2006/04/0426_060426_chernobyl.html)

Dan Gerous
10th Feb 2013, 09:41
I have to say I thought wind farms were a good idea and never thought of them as a blight on the landscape. That was until they started appearing all over the Borders where I live. They are everywhere now. It appears that any opposition to them at Borders Council is overruled by wee Ecks green gestapo. As someone wrote in our local rag this week, put a wind farm on Arthurs Seat and along the Pentland hills and watch the complaints and opposition to wind farms come flooding in.

10th Feb 2013, 10:27
For those of you who do not follow the debate elsewhere, this report may be interesting:


10th Feb 2013, 11:48
Yeah right.

And because so you look at the costs of Sellafield the very thing you are ignoring does not exist, the production of these damned things produces tonnes of toxic byproducts which we all know are treated and disposed of properly in China? Or the transportation of these parts across the world is "carbon negative"? Or that the construction of these things actually has no environmental impact at all?

Or how about the small matter of the UK, to meet upcoming EU regulations, will need to have 30% of power generation provided by "renewables", mainly the very wind power that achieved a "low" of 2.43% of theoretical production just a couple of years ago? To get that level, that means you MUST have the backup from coal/oil/gas as well, you build 2 "plants" instead of one, and the total generation capacity has to rise from 76GWh to 120GWh. That, alone, is a cost of £50 Billion, just because of the use of inefficient power generation such as wind MUST be used to satisfy some insane regulation based on badly flawed "science".

So you have the commissioning and decommissioning of the turbines and the ignored environmental costs in the production and decommissioning process. You have the extra costs of the extra "standby" generation capability, it's construction, decommissioning, operation, both financial and environmental. You have the small matter of the turbines never, nationwide, ONCE hitting their "peak" of 30% of rated capacity (yes, that is the "best" average efficiency quoted by the operators that is to be expected. "30% efficiency is "a good thing". Go figure) over a year at any time, and the average per farm can be much, much lower than that, leading to the subsidies necessary to stop them failing as a business. You have all the new roads needed to reach these wind farms, along with all the traffic, etc, needed to maintain them (plus the parts from China, remember). All of that is ignored in the Great Global Warming Scamdal (not a typo), these wind turbines are "a good thing" because they generate energy for "free". Well, they ain't "free", not by a long shot. And the more there are, the higher the cost. We are looking at something that is costing more than your Sellafield "argument", financially and especially environmentally, yet are being seen as "good" by those who do not wish to look at what is actually involved in having them things everywhere. And the costs will keep rising, at the same rate, which is an incredibly steeper rate than Sellafield.

Yet you are comparing the upcoming mess as something that CAN be solved, like the mess that is Sellafield? Tell you this much, if as much money had been spent on research into nuclear waste disposal instead of being pissed away on whining about it, nuclear waste would not be a problem. And now that sort of money, and more, is being pissed away on the few who do make "money for nothing" as the whole scam is based on a fantasy based on the demands of a watermelon minority, and for what? More costs, more environmental damage, more toxic waste than you'll ever see at Sellafield (cunningly hidden behind a Great Wall of Silence), all in the name of faux-green "technology" and a twisted ideal that somehow making sure electricity prices are at "luxury" levels "coz it's eco, innit" is somehow actually "progress".


G&T ice n slice
10th Feb 2013, 12:44
I just got a postcard thru the door from a compant called FCC Environment.

I've never hear of them.

"Changes to Lillyhall Landfill"
...planning application which seeks to change current operations at its Lillyhall landfill site on the outskirts of Distington..."

including: yes, wait for it ....

"" Assessing the site's suitability to safely dispose of low level radioactive waste""

HELLO HELLO HELLO is there anyone intelligent out there HELLOOOOOO

yes - radioactive waste in a landfill site which is sitting on several small streams and ...

ohhhhhh ukit I really have lost the will to live

10th Feb 2013, 12:58
And with a depression over the Irish Sea of 992mB (or hectopascalls or whatever) and a windspeed at Lyneham of 18mph (probably not that untypical), wind is only 3.65 GW. About 8% of demand and how much has the currently installed wind power cost?

10th Feb 2013, 13:05
Orkney can generate lots of energy but cannot export enough of it (http://www.orcadian.co.uk/2012/12/oic-dismay-at-cable-delay-announcement/)

10th Feb 2013, 13:23
On 16 October 2008 Ed Miliband, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, announced that the Act would mandate an 80% cut overall in six greenhouse gases by 2050.

From April 2010..

Climate Change Act has the biggest ever bill - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/christopherbooker/7550164/Climate-Change-Act-has-the-biggest-ever-bill.html)

The Energy Minister, Ed Miliband, at the opening of a wind farm Photo: PA

By Christopher Booker

6:32PM BST 03 Apr 2010

One of the best-kept secrets of British politics – although it is there for all to see on a Government website – is the cost of what is by far the most expensive piece of legislation ever put through Parliament. Every year between now and 2050, acccording to Ed Miliband's Department for Energy and Climate Change (Decc), the Climate Change Act is to cost us all up to £18.3 billion – £760 for every household in the country – as we reduce our carbon emissions by 80 per cent.

Last Thursday – with northern Britain again under piles of global warming – another tranche of regulations came into force, as this measure begins to take effect. New road tax rules mean that to put a larger, more CO2 -emitting car on the road will now cost £950. New "feed-in" subsidies for small-scale "renewables" mean that the installers of solar panels will be paid up to eight times the going rate for their miserable amount of electricity to be fed into the grid, with the overall bill for this scheme estimated eventually to be billions a year.

Not the least bizarre of the Government's strategies, however, is Decc's new Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) scheme, requiring up to 30,000 of our largest energy users, such as ministries, councils, universities, hospitals, supermarket chains (and even "monasteries and nunneries"), to pay to register with the Environment Agency. Some 5,000 of them, using more than "6,000 megawatt hours" of electricity each year (equivalent to the needs of 1,250 homes), will then have to carry out a cumbersome audit of their carbon footprint, using "three different metrics", in order to pay £12 for each ton of CO2 they emit – at a total initial cost estimated at £1.4 billion a year. This will eventually be contributed by all of us, either through taxes or, for instance, whenever we visit Tesco.

Even the 25,000 remaining non-participants in the scheme will still have to pay, between them, some £9.75 million to register with the Environment Agency, doubtless so they can be brought into the net at a later date. Meanwhile, as indicated by Decc's 100-page Carbon User's Guide, the "carbon efficiency" performance of the 5,000 participants will place them in an annual league table, with the worst performers having to pay cash penalties, to be given as bonuses to those at the top.

In return for the millions paid to the agency in registration and annual "subsistence" fees, it is hiring an army of officials to carry out audits, to ensure that no one is cheating. Anyone who incorrectly records emissions or fails to submit the stacks of necessary documentation in time will be fined £5,000 plus £500 a day, doubled after 40 days, with unlimited fines or up to two years in jail for more serious offences.

Recent studies show that, even though the first stage of this unbelievably complex scheme came into force on April Fools' Day, more than half the enterprises liable to sign up are not yet aware of what is required of them – so the Government could be looking forward to a huge additional income from those fines.

Once the scheme is established, of course, the idea is that, in future, the total amount of CO2 emitted will be capped, pushing the cost of each ton of CO2 even higher. All this and much more, such as the £100 billion the Government wants to see spent on useless wind farms, is designed to reduce Britain's CO2 emissions within 40 years to where they were in the early 19th century.

Since we contribute less than 2 per cent of global emissions, while China continues to build a new coal-fired power station every week, these empty getures will do nothing to reduce the world's overall "carbon footprint". Not that this makes any difference to global warming anyway – but at least it will give the Government billions more pounds of our money, while we still have any of it left.

Private jet
10th Feb 2013, 13:48
At a party a few years ago i was engaged into a conversation with one of the "Green" types (Complete with bushy beard and crumpled off white suit) He was totally ignorant to the fact that the best way to control pollution and the use of finite resources was to limit the population. In order to have a quality of life human beings use energy and create filth, and thats a fact of life. He just did not want to see it, only wind turbines and solar panels etc etc... Population control is THE ONLY ultimate answer.

10th Feb 2013, 17:44
Population control is THE ONLY ultimate answer.
I seem to remember that Hitler said something like that. I am wondering if you mean a sustainable population?

10th Feb 2013, 18:14
overruled by wee Ecks green gestapo

Does he have a Green Gestapo?

If so, THERE is a vote changer, if I had a vote; and I could have.

10th Feb 2013, 18:55
Does he have a Green Gestapo?

If so, THERE is a vote changer, if I had a vote; and I could have.

Well, someone is driving the "Great Green Hope" of 80% of energy generated by "Green" methods, and no nuclear whatsoever. What was the total generated in December 2010 again?

Oh, and you still can, if you think about it......

10th Feb 2013, 19:03
One really does have to be terribly careful with this sort of thing, especially when mentioning lawyers. So here's just a couple of links to a Spanish international company called Acciona which may, or may not, have any connection with wind farms in Britain.

Miriam Gonzalez Durante does however have more than a passing connection with the British deputy prime minister.

Wind turbines (http://www.acciona-energia.com/activity_areas/-wind-turbines.aspx)

Acciona Appoints Miriam González Durantez as Director, Gets Financial Backing for Mexico Wind Farm (http://www1.ifc.org/wps/wcm/connect/industry_ext_content/ifc_external_corporate_site/industries/infrastructure/news/acciona+appoints+miriam+gonzalez+durantez+as+director,+gets+ financial+backing+for+mexico+wind+farm)

Information is to the effect that the interest has been declared.

10th Feb 2013, 19:15
Private Jet is basically correct. While so many religions so selfishly and irresponsibly oppose birth control, the situation can only get worse.

As far as I am aware, I have no children.......so overpopulatuion isn't down to me!

14th Jun 2014, 09:46
screwy ones:


Screwy-looking wind turbine makes little noise and a big claim (http://www.gizmag.com/the-archimedes-liam-f1-urban-wind-turbine/32263/?utm_source=Gizmag+Subscribers&utm_campaign=8a007574a0-UA-2235360-4&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_65b67362bd-8a007574a0-90575025)

14th Jun 2014, 10:24
I had friends staying here the past few days from the Aríege region of France. They said there are disputes in their region where one village is offered large amounts of money to permit a wind farm in their immediate area (to which they have no objection) which will be visible from other villages which have not been offered similar inducements. The grounds for objection are the usual ones of noise, visual despoilment etc etc., but these all suddenly disappear when the money offered to the first village is reduced or cancelled completely, and offered to the objecting village. At which point, however, the first village suddenly finds that after all it has objections, such as noise, visual despoilment....and so it goes on.

14th Jun 2014, 11:13
Just realized that Hellsbrink, one of the very active posters, is not around any more. :confused:

14th Jun 2014, 11:36
Hellsbrink has not been around for something like six months now.

14th Jun 2014, 11:44
screwy ones

There's any number of 'novel' wind turbines being proposed, all claiming to be super-efficient.

We'll know when a worthwhile design is actually achieved, because it will be economic to install without jumping on the subsidy gravy-train.

14th Jun 2014, 17:07
yep, but some of them look really impressive (=promising), like the BAT:


Altaeros Energies - The Buoyant Airborne Turbine (http://www.altaerosenergies.com/bat.html)

- but I'm still dreaming of a small one on my roof to heat the water... :p

14th Jun 2014, 17:37
I like the alternatives probes illustrated for us - but are they as efficient at bird mincing than the ones currently blighting the landscape? We need to be told!

14th Jun 2014, 17:42
Recently drove Hwy 402 from London to Sarnia. Saw hundreds of the wretched things either complete or under construction. No power lines though...

14th Jun 2014, 17:46
It takes several years of wind turbine output just to pay for the energy used in manufacture, transport and construction.

One element of wind power generation I find disagreeable is the toll it takes on birdlife. The California Condor was rescued from extinction through an enormous effort, and the cause was celebrated among the eco-warriors. Today, there is little objection from that crowd at the prospect of sacrificing that species to the vagaries of wind power.

Feds Give Wind Producers Free Pass to Kill Condors | Heartlander Magazine (http://news.heartland.org/newspaper-article/2013/06/14/feds-give-wind-producers-free-pass-kill-condors)

Windy Militant
14th Jun 2014, 18:25
I've been looking after a medium size research turbine since 1994 and if the stories of bird kill were true I'd be up to my neck by now. Biggest problem I have with birds is stopping the crows nesting in the damn thing!
We have a hobby, small falcon type thing that sits on the blades when the thing is stopped, so I'm not convinced that birds are as stupid as people make out.
Having said that one of the biggest bird killers are High tension lines. Whether it's green energy, coal or nuclear they still get zapped!

14th Jun 2014, 20:07
Just realized that Hellsbrink, one of the very active posters, is not around any more.

He was most prolific, as was the thread starter Stuckgear, also gone and Minderbinder as well. Was it something we said ? :E Perhaps it was too much hot air :}


14th Jun 2014, 21:07
As a professional engineer in the power industry (but by no means a generation specialist), a few points...

1. Wind turbine manufacture may contribute to carbon emissions, but so too does the manufacture and construction of conventional plant.
2. Wind turbine efficiency of 30% is not atypical...thermal plant has traditionally been in the 30% area, although combined cycle gas turbines push that up towards 50%.
3. When the wind doesn't blow, turbines don't generate. However, the wind is always blowing somewhere. Therefore work is now underway to link wind generation 'areas' with a supergrid. This allows available wind generation to be shared where needed. It also offsets the need to provide conventional backup.
4. Offshore sites see more wind, more often.

I don't find turbines that offensive, and here in Northern Ireland, they contribute significantly to our demand. Personally, I don't think they are the whole answer. As in many decisions, the right answer is somewhere in the middle. We need a mix of base-load nuclear for stability and self-reliance, gas for its relative ease of construction and low cost, and renewables to begin denting the carbon issue.

14th Jun 2014, 22:14
As in many decisions, the right answer is somewhere in the middle. We need a mix of base-load nuclear for stability and self-reliance, gas for its relative ease of construction and low cost, and renewables to begin denting the carbon issue.

No No NO!! There is no middle ground you centralist extremist you:p:p.

14th Jun 2014, 22:45
I believe that hydro works quite well in certain locations, with the water being pumped back up to the 'header tank' when there is reduced demand for electricity.

I expect that the electricity to pump the water has to be drawn from another source (or, maybe the generators are multi-channel?) otherwise with the inevitable inefficiencies would require more power to raise the water than could be generated when falling - even a slower rise would result in the same work done over time - and you can't get owt for nowt energywise.

I thought that there was also one in Scotland, but I've filed to find it.

Here's the one in Wales:- Dinorwig Power Station - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dinorwig_Power_Station)

14th Jun 2014, 22:55
I think the Scottish one is on Ben Cruachan, pumping water up and down from Loch Awe.

Windy Militant
14th Jun 2014, 22:57
I thought that there was also one in Scotland, but I've filed to find it.
Visit Cruachan: About Us (http://www.visitcruachan.co.uk/about/)

Apparently the first high head pump storage scheme in the world.
I suspect both it and Dinorwig will be busy during the current Kev ball Hostilities. ;)

14th Jun 2014, 23:06
There's another at Ffestiniog, which was actually the first one built in The U.K., 360MW.

14th Jun 2014, 23:16

And not just condors.

That huge Solar array on the Calif / Nevada border trampled over huge number of species include the rare tortoise that had held up other development but didn't hold up the Solar array, which now kills flying birds.

The Greenies have one rule for them and one rule for everyone else when it comes to development, especially when it comes to damaging the environment to install Wind Turbines and ruin the views.

High tension wires also kill lots of birds, especially bigger birds like Swans etc.

15th Jun 2014, 00:44
Actually studying the grid watch supplied link is interesting, what is more interesting is the French one.

The frogs where generating over 20% excess power of good wholesome base load to the Poms, krauts, and anyone else they could. Over 100% of their load was Nuclear. About 15% hydro.

15th Jun 2014, 05:12
Smoking hole in foot springs to mind here: :D

£7m wind turbines at standstill over radar fears - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/energy/windpower/10828204/7m-wind-turbines-at-standstill-over-radar-fears.html)

15th Jun 2014, 05:42
I like the alternatives probes illustrated for us - but are they as efficient at bird mincing than the ones currently blighting the landscape? We need to be told!
- well, the sad fact is that actually all kinds of phone masts and TV towers (other communications, too) kill a considerable number of birds, too (saw some numbers in a study a couple of years ago, on paper, therefore no link :ouch: - sarcastic, I really do store them for my job). Also there are so many so interesting alternatives by now, I'm sure something will be used - better than the towering ones now that are costly and environmentally unfriendly to manufacture. The vertical axis looks interesting (but I'm still only dreaming of my own little one on the roof! One day, maybe...)

Small Wind Turbines - Small Wind Turbine Manufacturers - All Small Wind Turbines.com (http://www.allsmallwindturbines.com/)

the Japanese 'wind lens' sounds interesting as well (not for a household, but) Japanese breakthrough will make wind power cheaper than nuclear | MNN - Mother Nature Network (http://www.mnn.com/green-tech/research-innovations/blogs/japanese-breakthrough-will-make-wind-power-cheaper-than)#

P.S btw, hydropower takes its toll on environment, too. In the States hundreds of dams have been demolished and river-life restored Why We Remove Dams | American Rivers (http://www.americanrivers.org/initiatives/dams/why-remove/)

Little cloud
15th Jun 2014, 06:10
The RSPB's merchandising of bird tables has very successfully brought millions of birds into killing range of the domestic cat, another unintended consequence.

All is never as it seems, when the oil tanker Braer ran aground the official final toll of oiled birds was 1300. In the same stormy spell at least 100,000 birds died due to exposure and starvation.

15th Jun 2014, 08:21
One has to admire the French for their determination to avoid total reliance on external energy sources.
If we had continued to invest in nuclear as they have done we'd be in a far better place.

15th Jun 2014, 08:50
I'm with NRWSG - I believe there's a very good case for wind turbines to generate a sizeable proportion of our power needs - but the efficiencies and the style of the current designs, are pretty pathetic.
Propeller-style wind turbines are 19th century stuff. They are terribly inefficient, they kill birds, and they produce undesirable LF noise.
They are extremely limited in windpower applications, in their basically inherent poor design.

Probes is on the mark. The Darrius and Savonius turbine designs are a step forward - but there's another turbine that is a huge step forward again.
This turbine was actually patented by Tesla in 1913, but he couldn't get actual efficiency to match theoretical efficiency, until improved machining and production techniques, and improved materials of the late 20th century, brought the idea to the fore again.

The Tesla turbine is bladeless, is highly efficient, is quiet, and is constructed with a mesh grate on the intake so that birds can't be injured by it. It operates on the boundary layer principles of airflow.
It's a winner in my mind, and it's time the current designs were scrapped and contracts given to companies that will design and produce a viable Tesla wind turbine.


Here is the prototype Fuller Wind Turbine that utilises the Tesla turbine design.

Bladeless wind turbine inspired by Tesla (http://phys.org/news192426996.html)

15th Jun 2014, 10:00
One has to admire the French for their determination to avoid total reliance on external energy sources.
If we had continued to invest in nuclear as they have done we'd be in a far better place.

Yea I am sort of addicted to those two real time grid websites. The Frogs power demand had dropped off a while back, so their nukes where pumping out a huge percentage more for a while getting exported.

15th Jun 2014, 10:07
So there's wind blowing somewhere all the time. How big a grid is needed to exploit that and how much power gets lost in the long distance transmission?

How much energy can be extracted from the wind before there's an adverse environmental effect? Do we even know? The same question arises with cutting off solar radiation by intercepting it with solar cells.

I was told that in New Zealand, where they have a geothermal power station, the number of geysers around Rotorua and their height and eruption frequency have decreased over the years.....so it seems that extracting energy from nature has its drawbacks even if we don't yet know what they are.

15th Jun 2014, 10:23
So there's wind blowing somewhere all the time. How big a grid is needed to exploit that and how much power gets lost in the long distance transmission?

But radeng, that's the whole point of a transmission system ... to move power over large distances in an efficient manner. Also, this new grid may be largely offshore, so not as intrusive as the normal tower line structures. I'm not saying that wind is by any means the whole answer, but we have the technology now to make it a worthwhile part.

15th Jun 2014, 10:26
Back in the late 70's I remember seeing work that was being done at Edinburgh University on wave power, and a number of different types of device to derive electricity from the bobbing up and down action. There seemed to be a lot of work going on at the time, but it all went quiet in the 80's. It would be interesting to see why it was not progressed.

Shaggy Sheep Driver
15th Jun 2014, 10:29
There ISN'T wind blowing somewhere all the time! Remember the winter of 1962/3? Massive area of high pressure over the UK for months. That brought clear skies which in winter led to many weeks of temperatures way below zero, And of course there was no wind anywhere under the wide influence of the high pressure system.

Thankfully we had coal back then, and first-generation nuclear power was just dawning.

Politicians love windmills as the Daily Mail reader sees these only too visible monstrosities and thinks 'oh goody, the gov is doing something about impending power shortages'. In fact it's doing stuff all.

We need reliable core power - nuclear power - and we need it NOW! (So we should have started building it at least 10 years ago!). And we need to keep all the coal fired stations on line (no silly biomass) until nuclear replacements are in place.

Little cloud
15th Jun 2014, 10:31
Propeller-style wind turbines are 19th century stuff. They are terribly inefficient, they kill birds, and they produce undesirable LF noise.
They are extremely limited in windpower applications, in their basically inherent poor design.

Onetrack, If you check out some of the most modern large turbines, from say Enercon or Vestas you'll find that they are extremely efficient and quiet, especially the Enercon machines which have blade tip winglets and no gearboxes. An unfortunate aspect of the overall strategy in the UK has been the siting of large numbers of turbines in relatively low wind areas.
Contrary to belief there's an extensive grid network well up into the Scottish Highlands, a legacy of the hydro electric developments of the 1950's. Annual productivity of 50-60% of rated power is common in these areas. If development had been more market driven rather than driven by financial inducements these remote areas would have seen many more turbines as the low wind and usually densely populated sites would not have been viable.

15th Jun 2014, 11:08
Shaggy Sheep Driver; tilting at windmills can be the new national sport...

15th Jun 2014, 11:15
"An unfortunate aspect of the overall strategy in the UK has been the siting of large numbers of turbines in relatively low wind areas."

Which everyone has to pay for for years to come and no one will hold the greenies responsible because "as long as it's clean and green" is all they care about, regardless of whether it is cost effective.

Most subsidies are now being cut to the bone or totally abolished here in Aus, especially if it has anything to do with Carbon, Wind and Solar because too much has been ripped off the Gov't in the past and someone has at last said enough is enough.

Not 100% sure I agree with it but that is what happens in the long run if you pull the wool over peoples eyes.

Windy Militant
15th Jun 2014, 11:15
Vertical Axis machines have been experimented with for a number of years now, but there are a number of practical problems and they are not as efficient as Horizontal axis machines of the same size. Think about it the blades travel through the air flow in different directions which causes interference and vibration.
This has also been proved by taking power curves for the various types of machines using standard measurements which include wind speeds, atmospheric pressure, temperature and Humidity by an internationally agreed methodology.

As for the Tesla machines it would be interesting to see a properly accredited power curve measurements taken for the system to confirm the claims made for them.

If you want to blame any body for the lack of development in nuclear energy in the UK Blame Maggie Thatcher*, when the old supply networks were sold off the new companies looked at Nuclear realised that there was a lot of hidden costs which had been borne by the MOD and went for Gas generation which gave quick large returns on any investment for the short term which was the ethos at that time. EDF is still part owned by the French Government. Market forces at work again.:rolleyes:

* Didn't the Tories start the subsidies on wind to try and catch the Green vote!

15th Jun 2014, 11:38
thanks, onetrack, very interesting! (the noise, though... :ouch:)

And it seems that extracting energy from nature has its drawbacks even if we don't yet know what they are. sure, everything has its drawbacks.

as for the underwater devices - most tend to influence sediment, and if it starts to settle in wrong places, it won't do.

15th Jun 2014, 22:59
I don't see how better design for a single stage can get you past Betz's rule and present day turbines get to within 80 or so percent of that. There are a couple of stability questions that need to be answered though. Requiring that wind power, if available, be purchased first makes investment in conventional power less attractive. Another problem is that present generators are not synchronous machines. If more than 20% or so of nameplate capacity connected to a grid is derived from induction machines, like present day wind turbines, the grid becomes unstable and will shut down, probably damaging expensive machinery on the way.

As an aside, I have read that the University of Delaware has proposed siting large wind farms in such a way as to mitigate or eliminate the effects of hurricanes. If that be true, what are the existing farms already doing to the weather??

After an excellent landing etc...

15th Jun 2014, 23:06
"Requiring that wind power, if available, be purchased first makes investment in conventional power less attractive."

That is wrong for a start. Why should wind get a free run.

How about Wind Turbines are not built until the economic case for them is proven instead of it all done by subsidies ?

How much do some of these Wind generating companies get paid without actually producing anything ?

16th Jun 2014, 02:38
Ogre - Wave energy R&D is ongoing, and the research is all about trying to find the most viable and most efficient system. A trial WE unit has just been installed and is about ready to be commissioned, at Garden Island Naval Base, just off the cost of Perth, Western Australia. It looks promising.

CETO Commercial Scale Unit Overview (http://www.carnegiewave.com/index.php?url=/ceto/ceto-overview)

I have to agree with little cloud - subsidies are largely poorly structured, and market-driven systems are the way to go.
However, subsidies do play a part in getting new systems established and encouraging R&D - provided those subsidies are limited, they're properly targetted, and they're not just used as a constant source of funding to keep companies in business, that would otherwise fail.

16th Jun 2014, 02:55
R&D should be totally separate from any subsidies, if any subsidies are needed at all.
R&D can be written off in Aus by companies.

Why should Wind, Solar power etc get subsidies when other companies don't ?

16th Jun 2014, 04:10
Fascinating video of that Tesla turbine running.

I don't quite see how it would replace a wind turbine though?

I can certainly see how it could replace a turbocharger, or a compressor in a jet engine very successfully, it's a brilliant idea.

How would you get all that air mass that turns a conventional wind turbine, to go down the inlet of the tesla?
The second vid seems to suggest it's not a problem, but could you explain please?

16th Jun 2014, 05:05
Atomkraft:How would you get all that air mass that turns a conventional wind turbine, to go down the inlet of the tesla?Well, I can't tell you, and I guess that's why the Tesla turbine is still being studied and experimented with. Obviously, how to get adequate wind pressure guided onto the turbine discs needs to be explored further. Perhaps funnelling it, would assist.

The simple and obvious technique is to build a much larger version of Fullers prototype, which would provide a far larger output. Personally, I would consider adding an exhaust tube to his Tesla wind turbine, at right angles to wind flow - to add a venturi effect, which would assist in speeding up air flow through the turbine. Fuller is an aviation man, he does understand airflow!

Tesla didn't invent his turbine with wind in mind. However, the design lends itself to usage in positions such as geothermal steam turbines, where the Tesla turbine can take full advantage of the pressure of either steam or just hot artesian water under pressure.
There's a lot of research yet to be done, but I'm sure someone will find a way to improve wind turbines so they perform at greater efficiencies than they do now.

16th Jun 2014, 06:31
Yes, it looks like a wonderful turbine, and I can see how it could be a great motor or compressor, or pump even.

Might do well in a hydro plant as a replacement for the combined turbine/ water pumps they use. Or as someone else said, to replace the conventional steam turbines that are so widely used.

Don't see it replacing wind turbines though. Sadly.

Utterly brilliant design. :ok:

I knew Tesla was a clever geezer, but that's about the most elegant design of anything, that I've ever seen.
I wonder if Viktor Shauberger would have approved?

16th Jun 2014, 09:19
So how efficient is the very large power grid going to be?

What are the insulator losses per mile at 400kV? What is the line resistance per mile for a 400kV line?

Obviously, there's a balance point between insulator losses and line loss for a given amount of power transfer. Transformer losses mustn't be forgotten, either - although transformers are efficient, the losses must still be substantial (although a low percentage) or they wouldn't need oil cooling. There's also inverter losses.

So if I generate 1GW of DC (1.34 mega-horsepower) from the windmill in the north of Scotland, how much 240 volt 50Hz will I be able to extract in Cornwall?

Windy Militant
16th Jun 2014, 18:55
The power losses will be the same as for "conventional power stations"
but of course you could always refurbish Battersea, throw the lovies out of the Tate and build a Nuke on Tower Hamlets!
Most bigger turbines generate AC, our old girl drives a squirrel cage motor to produce 415V AC.
Things have improved a lot since she was designed with off the shelf components, some of the MW machines are now using cryo cooling to cut losses in the generators due to heating. There are myriad methods of variable speed drives to allow synchronisation with the grid as well.
Wind turbines have improved a lot since Trumpton, with the exception there is generally no Scrumpy!;)

16th Jun 2014, 19:45
Windy, I agree with your sentiments but may I make a slight alteration?
On your second line delete BUILD and insert DROP.
Thank you.

Windy Militant
16th Jun 2014, 22:54
I suppose you've got to look on the brighter side of life. :E
http://i105.photobucket.com/albums/m201/Peter_Anthony/e273aec4-7bed-47a3-b533-7bf1fa50d15d.png (http://s105.photobucket.com/user/Peter_Anthony/media/e273aec4-7bed-47a3-b533-7bf1fa50d15d.png.html) ;)

17th Jun 2014, 08:02
When it's in the middle of winter, everybody is freezing cold and the wind is blowing wet snow at about 0 degrees, Do they have to shut down the turbines because of blade icing.

17th Jun 2014, 08:26
So if I generate 1GW of DC (1.34 mega-horsepower) from the windmill in the north of Scotland, how much 240 volt 50Hz will I be able to extract in Cornwall?
I read a beauty in a newspaper a while back suggesting that, for exactly that reason, to get the generation closer to those that use that electricity, Hyde Park should converted to a wind farm before any more beautiful countryside is defaced. Nice one!!

1GW from the windmill in the north of Scotland? You'll be lucky!! Much, much less than that produced by ALL the 'wind farms' in Scotland right now (in fact two of them are actually consuming electricity!). See:RWE Innogy - Renewable energy for Europe (http://www.rwe.com/web/cms/en/194914/rwe-innogy/sites/production-data-live/)

17th Jun 2014, 19:26
On the question of losses, a 400kV line, transmitting 500MVA, loses about 50W/m.

Over a distance of 100km, you'll lose 100,000 x 50 = 5,000,000W. Or 5MW. Or 1% if you exclude Power Factor. So roughly 99% efficient over that distance. Of course, that's very rough...so many factors to consider. Increase the conductor size (this is based on 630mm2) and the losses reduce significantly...

18th Jun 2014, 09:00

Thanks. So the 2,347 kW being produced by ALL the (RWE) wind turbines in Scotland, the 1,409 kW produced by North of England wind turbines, the 6,064 kW produced by the wind turbines in Wales and the 839 kW produced by the wind turbines in Cornwall right now (that is 10.7 MW in total) shouldn't 'travel' many hundreds of km in order to have much left for consumers to use? Probably enough left to charge the batteries of a few electric cars in London. And all those ugly wind turbines just for that?

Why, oh why, do the 'greenies' get so hooked on such a waste of space, money and time that defaces so much of the beautiful countryside when it is so spectacularly ineffective?

18th Jun 2014, 09:11

Because it is green and it doesn't matter if it is ineffective, wasteful or costly as long as it is green.

18th Jun 2014, 10:48
Because it is green and it doesn't matter if it is ineffective, wasteful or costly as long as it is green.

Which means it's not "green" at all.

18th Jun 2014, 12:39
As a retired engineer, I reserve the right to look at the hysterical frenzy over windmills/windfarms with a jaundiced eye. I don't have any significant examples anywhere near my residence at present. But given the alarming headlong rush towards shoving up large numbers of them all over the UK, even in the meteorologically least windy parts like mine, I can't bank on this situation continuing indefinitely.

I have at least had a bit of a look-see at an example of one of the big ones, open to the public. About 12 years ago, I climbed the windmill at Swaffham, Norfolk, by means of the internal staircase up to the viewing gallery. The gallery was apparently designed by the Architect Sir Norman Foster, who we are told also designed the Gherkin and Wembley Stadium. Since he also designed the "Wobbly Bridge" in London, I was slightly reminded of this by the rhythmic swaying of the windmill as the very large sails turned in the wind and drove the generator gears. Although I was interested in what I saw, I was not in the least persuaded that I would like to have a monstrosity like it anywhere near me. So I felt a certain sympathy with the good folk of Swaffham, previously a very nice sleepy market town that I have visited many times.

The Green Britain Centre, Norfolk - Our Green Energy - Ecotricity (http://www.ecotricity.co.uk/our-green-energy/our-green-electricity/from-the-wind/wind-parks-gallery/the-green-britain-centre-norfolk)

20th Jun 2014, 09:43
A significant advantage of viewing the beautiful countryside from that viewing gallery would have been that from there you would not have had your view spoilt by that monstrous white elephant because you were in it!! I am sure that by now that view has been vandalised with hoards more of those monstrous white elephants!

I see that the '16 MW' monstrosities nearest to me are now producing all off 74 kW!!! (And the next '9 MW' monstrosities down the road are 'producing' ... ... -34 kW!!!!!)

20th Jun 2014, 09:50
Are they now generating AC directly? I am aware that some of the early ones produced DC and used invertors to get properly phased AC for the grid.

How do they get constant speed for the generator?

20th Jun 2014, 14:42
They don't. They are induction machines and rotate at slightly above synchronous speed when there is enough wind, God willing...

After an excellent landing etc...