First German offshore wind farm shows the huge potential of electric cars in terms of efficiency and stability of the power grid

The building work for Germany’s first offshore wind power park will start next week. The wind farm called Alpha Ventus is a joint venture of the utilities E.ON, Vattenfall Europe and EWE and will cost about €180 million. The German government will contribute€50 million to the research project that should provide insights so that numerous similar projects can follow. Currently, there are 30 wind power park projects planned in the North Sea and in the Baltic Sea around northern Germany. This first project will be located 45 kilometers north of the island of Borkum in the North Sea. Power production could possibly begin this year. A 70km-long cable will connect the wind turbines with the German power grid. Eventually, there’llbe twelve tremendous wind turbines generating 60 Megawatts of electricity together which is enough to provide power to 60,000 homes. This project is unique as it is the first wind turbine park in deep waters. The wind turbines will be anchored in the seabed with steel posts where the North Sea is 40 meters deep. Similar projects in Britain and Denmark are closer to the coast and therefore in shallower waters.

It will take a lot of effort and money to get this first wind turbine park running and to maintain it as salty air, corrosion and high waves threaten to damage the turbines. Besides, critics argue that offshore wind parks have a significant adverse environmental impact and could threaten the fragile ecosystem.

The offshore wind parks should help to boost the share of wind energy of the total German energy consumption which is at about 7% currently. The extra megawatts generated by wind turbines, however, will neither reduce Germany’s reliance on fossil fuel imports, nor will they save carbon dioxide emissions. Germany is phasing out all its nuclear power plants until 2022 and even if all these overly ambitious and expensive, partly not at all profitable and inefficient renewable energy projects are put into action, this will hardly be enough to offset the decline in power supply. This tremendous amount of money channelled into green power projects won’t help to combat global warming unless the German government realizes that there’s no way out of the energy crisis and high carbon dioxide emissions but to use all sources of energy we have. Especially carbon-neutral energy sources such as nuclear power are essential to electricity generation and energy security in the short and medium-term. Though issues such as the disposal of nuclear waste have not yet been resolved, nuclear power is cheap, dependable and all nuclear power plants in Germany have the highest safety standards.

Although politicians claim that offshore wind parks are profitable, because many investors plan to pour money into such projects as soon as they get the official permission, this huge interest is artificially generated by generous government subsidies.

Another obstacle is that the electricity grid is not sufficient and not capable of efficient and intelligent energy transport. First, new power lines will have to be built to transport the energy generated at offshore wind power parks to consumers. Second, without accurate capacity control, fluctuations can threaten the stability of the grid by generating energy surpluses. If power supply exceeds demand, utilities have to slow down the generation of other power plants which is very expensive. Therefore, negative electricity prices can occur at the European Energy Exchange in Leipzig so that electricity suppliers can stimulate demand. (Getting money for consuming electricity? – That’s indeed possible!)

A fleet of electric cars could be the solution to this problem. Most electric cars will be charged up at night using surplus power. At night, much less power is used than during the day. Nevertheless, nuclear and coal-fired power plants covering most of the day’s base load are running 24-7 whether or not there’s demand for the generated power. If there’s a lot of wind generating an even greater surplus, the grid could collapse. Electric cars could be set so that they are charged when electricity is cheap, offsetting the negative effects of uneven power consumption. Until electric cars can tap into unneeded electricity supplies, wind turbines are regularly switched off on windy days as there’s not enough damand and no capacity to store the energy.

http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,567622,00.html

Advertisements

4 Comments

Filed under Economy, Environment, Politics, Uncategorized

4 responses to “First German offshore wind farm shows the huge potential of electric cars in terms of efficiency and stability of the power grid

  1. Platinum Tidal Electric Bridge Construction Company Limited Auckland New Zealand I am very interested in the clean power generation on the oceans by Alpha Ventus Wind Turbine Generators are a good idea for the construction of turbine masts suspended from the seabed Our Company is presently completing feasibility studies for similar Turbine steel hollow water piles to hold our vertical axis variable pitch floating Turbines revolving around a 4 meter steel pile rammed into the seabed in up to 70 meters deep water and depending on the seabed up to 30eters below that or less in rocky seabed A 30 meter circle of eight 2 meters diameter steel piles are also rammed into the seabed suspending the 2 level 6 meter high round powerhouse building housing the Turbine shaft superconducting generator and main hollow turbine shaft top water bearing and platform walkway 30m above sea level I think each wind Turbines there put out 3 to 5MW of power which is quite a bit for such a big wind generator While they can make power above water our main area is the power that is under the water where their wind masts are is where all the energy is that we are harnessing from the moving tides you can visit my website to see some of our ideas plans sites hppp://www.flickr.com/photos.tidalelectricturbine I estimate 6072MW of power from 625 square meters area of 5 variable pitch floating turbine blades in a 45,000 cubic meter marine area space in the Kaipara harbor 900square km area you see on the map on my website I am interested in finding investors and partnering company’s who will entertain this idea of making Liquid Hydrogen Oxygen fuel hydraulically from the massive Tidal In Stream forces that are screaming underwater past those giant windmills hovering above the sea waiting for wind while the wasted source of untapped energy that everyone seems to miss the potential that Tidal Energy holds goes right past under their wind TurbinesThere is no reason why these Tidal type turbines can’t be installed in the UK or Canada given the chance since there is billions been thrown into the Energy Projects I guess it’s the Consultants and Investors who are propped up by Governments gets a big slice of it as contractors mentors and Funding Agencies what I am looking for so at the present time its wind Turbines and to be in first to claim the tide power is another matter The Platinum Turbine Concept proposal is to manufacture fuels from splitting seawater into Liquid Hydrogen and Oxygen then bottling it for export from the remote turbine site direct to the Aviation Automotive Industries and Embedded Power Company’s Grid Sub Stations eliminating the need for high radiation cables cluttering the seabed harmful high voltage field currents expensive wiring pylons and relying on wind solar and weather The Tides are guaranteed predictable reliable sustainable energy delivered in a bottle Any enquiries are welcome I still support wind Turbines for making power available whie the tidal turbines make their way up viable till proven
    John Wanoa Director Turbine Design Engineer

  2. Wind energy and speed Measurement systems

    Dear Sirs,

    The Ministry of Energy and Mining in the Sudan has announced their need for qualified reliable bidders to submit their offers and designs, supply installation and commissioning of five standard wind masts at the recommended windy sites in different locations along the Red Sea Coast.

    Closing date is the 3rd of August 2009.

    If interested to quote kindly please contact us to send you the details.

    Best regards

    Dr. Hassan Agabna

    Chairman,

    Alforat Co. Ltd.

    4th Floor, 4th tower, Kuwaiti Towers, Nile Avenue,

    Khartoum, Sudan.

    Mobile 00249912307680

    P.O.Box 11951 Khartoum – postal code 11111

  3. Dear. Partnership
    Herewith I would like to repeat my Information to you as well as to introducing of my Self
    my name is Alam living in Sulawesi of Indonesia.
    I am in the field of Tourism as tour Guide in My Region and you can visit my Website at http://www.alamnusantaratour.com

    My present here is not relate to my Job as above and I just would like to inform that the Government (Governor)of North Sulawesi the one of Province in Indonesia, is really need for wind electric development in Their Region with Capacity 1 MW till 5 MW – Up, with Total Land area more than 4000 Ha, open the Sea

    The term of Condition of Foreign Investor who want to Invest in Indonesia, must be Joining with Local Company and one of the Big Local Company “PT.BINA KARYA INTI GEMILANG “ also in North Sulawesi has been signed The MoU (Memorandum Of Understanding ) with the Government about Development’s planning of Wind Electric

    The President Director of Local Company Att. Mr. Iwan Suhuyanly has been asked to me to looking for the serious Partner from Abroad to invest in Manado North Sulawesi

    Though my position as informant, but I hope you do not have worry or hesitate on my Self, because this is a mandate to me from the company as above and I said with full Honesty and transparent.

    Should you kindly to consider on my Proposal and highly appreciate for your kind attention and consideration, and if you have interesting kindly to spent your a little time to North Sulawesi Indonesia to survey the locations and meet with Mr. Iwan Suhuyanly the President Director of Local Company and the Governor of North Sulawesi Indonesia to discussing more detail about the term of Condition, because this is a big Project for long term Business.

    I will be accompany you

    Thank you very much and looking forward to hearing from you soonest

    Best Regards

    Alam
    Residence Address :
    Jl. Poros Makassar – Maros Km. 20. N0, 209
    Mandai Zip Code 90552 South Sulawesi Indonesia
    Telp/Fax. +62 411 553927/ Mobile Phone +62 81 342 708 665
    Email. sulawesi-explore@hotmail.com

  4. While surfing Bing I found your site…very interesting! I enjoy staying up-to-date about this type of information. I’ll definitely bookmark your site for additional reading

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s