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Long-distance wake affects majority of US sites 

Credit:  14 December 2018 by Craig Richard | Windpower Monthly | www.windpowermonthly.com ~~

Almost 90% of all operational US wind farms in 2016 were close enough to other projects to either cause, or be affected by, wake effects.

The most severe wake effects can reduce an owner’s revenue from a wind farm by several million dollars over a six-year period, according to the paper, published in the Nature Energy journal.

However, researchers from the University of Colorado Boulder (CU), the University of Denver (DU) and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) found that wake losses can be anticipated and managed.

“This work argues for more thoughtful deployment of wind energy,” said Julie Lundquist, a researcher at CU, and lead author of the study.

Wake effects have been observed to extend typically up to 40km, the researchers stated.

Of the 994 individual wind farms in the US in 2016, nearly 90% were within 40km of another project – all of which could be subject to, or cause wake effects.

During the researchers’ one-month study, power production dropped by 8% at a downwind facility when an upwind site was included in their simulation.

The most severe wake effects also only occur less than 4% of the time – meaning wake losses can be anticipated and managed.

In “stably stratified atmospheric conditions”, wakes can extend to more than 50km downwind, the authors wrote in the abstract for the paper, Costs and consequences of wind turbine wake effects arising from uncoordinated wind energy development.

Source:  14 December 2018 by Craig Richard | Windpower Monthly | www.windpowermonthly.com

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial educational effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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