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A visit would be sweet (since i wasn't able to produce an october meet in Bremen.)

Me taka train Monday, to greater downtown Husum. Wind Trade Fair event of the year. Big business deal, finest parties, everyone there. what's weird, it's a small town. So when 25,000 attendees crash into a place with 800 hotel rooms within 20 km, all hell breaks loose. People stay in vacation houses and rooms within a 100 km radius. Hundreds of cabbies, if not more, are imported from over north 'Schland. Folk stay in cities 150 km away.

The mayor invites everyone to the Rathaus for drinks, a thousand or two come, and there's fireworks over the wind turbine in the harbor. Some are already staggering from the Vestas party the night before.

I get to invite colleagues for whisky at Cafe Einstein on Wednesday. Ormonde offshore park will be inaugerated by Vattenfall. Nordex and REpower will fight to throw the best cocktail party, sometimes every evening.

(You see, it's not like other conferences. Since the attendees, except the top managers, have no place to go, so the Messe rocks on into the night. WAB ((Windenergie Agentur Bremen/Bremerhaven)) rocks the house, and dozens of firms bring live music into the halls.)

the business transacted is equally astounding.

On Friday evening is the traditional Wind Wanderers party, where restaurants and bars in town have live music and many thousands wander between venues, soaking up the local uh, alcohol. i've seen top execs being forced against a wall by their minions, to help them stay upright, where they would have melted into the pavement otherwise. Wrong enhancement for the masses.

Pretty heavy to be on your toes 4 straight days, around every corner is someone truly important for you to connect.

Plus all the latest tech is there, even this year helicopters giving demos of rescue at sea.

Unlike the past years' glorious weather, it will rain and be muddy as hell, harking back to the early days where the hundreds of pioneers of this industry gathered in barns.

Sadly, some of my top colleagues won't be there this year, having passed on, or were on the wrong motorcycle.

I love most the secrets unearthed.

And i didn't have a place to stay until two days ago, when another pioneer said i could stay at his wonderful country house, as at the last Husum celebration.

Given that when i began in the US, our first conferences had 40 people in a motel, and my first visit to Denmark introduced me to the other eighty working in the field, this is a huge passage to grok.

one week from tomorrow, the Saturday train home, is usually done with champagne, since the Wind Wanderers was the night before. As i begin to try and process the hundreds of key moments.

You can see how excited i am. We'll see how the Fair responds to the enormous pressure and negative projections for the industry, as the dinosaurs fight with their last breaths.

ONWARD!

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 02:56:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
OK, so less than a thousand come to the Mayor's party, the post wasn't written within engineering safety tolerance.

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin
by Crazy Horse on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 03:06:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I was just going to say that I hope there are at least a few engineers invited in order to keep the marketing and financial wizards at bay. Reality and all that...
by asdf on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 03:27:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Lots of engineers there, and lots of engineering discussion.

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin
by Crazy Horse on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 03:36:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The question I would ask, if I were there, would be about the short term stability of the grid in the presence of high penetration of wind generation. Is the required technology available, and is it accounted for in the cost model?
by asdf on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 04:11:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Developing smart grids and energy markets

A short pdf on one of the programs being run by the CLEEN consortium (companies, academia, research institutions, cooperating using Finnish state funding channeled through Tekes - the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation).

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 04:27:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Some engineers might ask what have you been smoking?

Short term stability of the gird does not compute with high penetration of wind. The short term stability of the grid is fine, especially in amurka where wind is 2%. High penetration of wind, you mean like in north germany or higher in Denmark, where we're well over 20%, and the grid still functions?

What we've learned is... utility engineers like to have something to do. In spite of them doing something, electron force still flows.

At current levels, and projected into the mid-term, there are zero effects on the grid which can't be managed cost-effectively.

What required technology?

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 04:31:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Grid stability is brought to you by having reserve capacity available to adapt offer (mainly) to demand at all times. It can adapt to variable offer as well.

Reserve capacity is something that needs to be managed on a system-wide basis, not on a plant by plant basis, otherwise it becomes horribly expensive - for all types of producers. This is the core mistake anti-wind opponents do about the cost of intermittency of wind - what matters is not the absolute intermittency of wind, but the additional cost it imposes on the system (which already has to deal with large intra-day variability and with possible incidents at very large plants like nukes). Practice tells us that this additional cost has consistently been overestimated.

Wind power

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 04:34:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
In my wannabe writerly way what i tried to say was

"Practice tells us that this additional cost has consistently been overestimated. "

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 04:53:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
One question is about the long term considerations of wind patterns, etc. What I'm asking about is the short term variability that can lead to voltage oscillations in the grid, like this:

In large wind farms connected to the transmission network the main technical constraint to take into account is the power system transient stability that could be lost when, for example, a voltage dip causes the switch off of a large number of WGs.

A system experiences a state of voltage instability when there is a progressive or uncontrollable drop in voltage magnitude after a disturbance, increase in load demand or change in operating condition. The main factor, which causes these unacceptable voltage profiles, is the inability of the distribution system to meet the demand for reactive power. Under normal operating conditions, the bus voltage magnitude (V) increases as Q injected at the same bus is increased. However, when V of any one of the system's buses decreases with the increase in Q for that same bus, the system is said to be unstable. Although the voltage instability is a localised problem, its impact on the system can be wide spread...

Voltage Stability Investigation of Grid Connected Wind Farm
Trinh Trong Chuong

According to my limited understanding of the subject, to successfully integrate a large fraction of wind generators into your grid you need to have pretty sophisticated real-time monitoring of the voltage and current phases throughout the grid, and a system that tells you what to do when you have a troublesome transient condition, and then the appropriate resources (reactive power sources, for example) appropriately distributed within the system.

I don't know much about this, but my impression is that there is a lot of electrical engineering work going on in the background that is not immediately apparent. And my fundamental worry is that while "we" are all working vigorously for additional sustainable resources in the overall supply system, some of the hard technical problems have not actually been solved yet...

Maybe I'm full of it, which is why I would ask such questions at an appropriate conference...

by asdf on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 07:03:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
As far as I understand, modern wind turbines have reactive power and the ability to stabilise voltage.

Wind power
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Sat Sep 15th, 2012 at 04:00:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No power engineer, so can't adequately address most issues, except:

  •  Capacitor banks have often been added to grid interconnection points for reactive power.

  •  european grid engineers and their bosses fought against wind for decades, even into this century, based upon such technical issues. Most issues never arose, and the ones which did have been solved. Turbines in most markets are now required to have certified low-voltage ride through capability (LVRT).

  •  Currently, utility engineers are very supportive of wind's addition to the grid. Decentralized generation has positive aspects as well.

  •  I've never seen any technical problems which haven't also had a solution over time.


"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin
by Crazy Horse on Sat Sep 15th, 2012 at 04:06:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
"I've never seen any technical problems which haven't also had a solution over time."

This is exactly my question. If the integration timeline is, say, 20 years to get to, say, 50% of solar PV and wind supply, then that is one set of requirements to the power engineers. If the integration timeline is, say, 5 years, that is a significantly different--and potentially much more expensive--set of requirements...

by asdf on Sat Sep 15th, 2012 at 11:02:21 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Should have said i've never seen a problem which hasn't been solved within just a few years. And that's over four decades.

More expensive? By what corrupt metrics?

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Sat Sep 15th, 2012 at 01:21:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ok, take it easy, I'm just asking. The point is that if there are difficult technical problems to be overcome in order to integrate sustainable supplies, and if the expected timeline is 20 years, that is one development scenario. If the timeline is 5 years, that is a different development scenario. It sort of sounds like you know that there are no such problems and that everything is ok. Which is great. But if I were at such a conference, I would ask. That's all.
by asdf on Sat Sep 15th, 2012 at 07:15:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
This has been studied:

http://www.ieawind.org/task_25.html

It seems that the stability of the grid does not become a problem at any penetration, i.e., solutions exist and are very affordable.

Another issue is that very high penetrations require improvements in transmission to reap the aggregation benefits. I.e., building long HVDC interconnects. There, concerns similar to yours may have a bit more validity. Somebody just has to start building the damn things ;-)

by mustakissa on Wed Sep 19th, 2012 at 06:02:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Wow. Sounds way more exciting than a weekend with the Baths, I can promise you. Have a great trip!

Let's plan a meetup later.

'tis strange I should be old and neither wise nor valiant. From "The Maid's Tragedy" by Beaumont & Fletcher

by Wife of Bath (kareninaustin at g mail dot com) on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 03:18:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I get repeat invitations, but haven't made it yet. But as we'll have a German office from next year, it'll become more logical to go...

Have fun.

Wind power

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 03:25:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You could find a last minute Ferien Wohnungand and  just do it. the next one's in two years time.

(The urban version next yea rin Hamburg, they alternate, has none of the magic.)

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 03:45:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Your comment added to the Wind series (as have been a number of recent threads with discussions of wind or solar)

Wind power
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 03:27:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Merci, we do want most of the windpower discussions here to be a future reference. (Did you include afew's one-horned goat discussions?)

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin
by Crazy Horse on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 03:41:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
in German wind et all


German energy transition is sustainable?
(Policy Brief 281 - September 2012)
11/09/12

Germany began in 2011 a radical transition energy, or "Energiewende", whose goal is the complete abandonment of nuclear energy by 2022 and reduce emissions of greenhouse gas emissions in countries of 80-95% by 2050 . Before that date, the country will have to produce electricity by passing almost entirely of gas, oil and coal to replace 80% of renewable energy (RE).

(...)

Summary

  • The ambitious goal of Energiewende : without nuclear energy, but also of fossil fuels and carbon
  • An appeal must fossil fuels to provide the energy transition
  • Development of renewable energy, spearhead Energiewende , faces many challenges
  • Costs Energiewende are uncertain, but generally very high, and will be based ultimately on the German consumer
  • The Energiewende result of a sovereign decision not without risk to the equilibrium of the EU energy policy

(And yes, they either use google translate or someone rather incompetent to write their English summary...)

Wind power

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 03:31:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That's truly strange, since German wind often passes through France first.

Challenges? That's what we're here for. Costs uncertain? Based upon what metrics. Equilibrium of EU energy policy? Gag me with a spoon.

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 03:39:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Poor English is unfortunately one of the recognizable traits of many governmental or corporate French web sites. Seriously, how many thousand native English speakers living in France and available for writing work? So what's the excuse?

The other trend shaping up in our fair country this fall is also a big lobbying push and media blitz for fracking (unsuccessful so far), coupled with the inevitable dissing of renewables ("too expensive at the present" and "do not work anyway"). I'll try a diary if I can get the time.

by Bernard on Fri Sep 14th, 2012 at 04:40:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Bernard:
Seriously, how many thousand native English speakers living in France and available for writing work?

Yup. Srsly.

Yesterday I looked at the site of French think tank EuropaNova (founded 2003). They offer English and French versions, but when you go for the English version you get 100% French...

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Sat Sep 15th, 2012 at 01:42:24 AM EST
[ Parent ]
But how is it with Hollande's push to make France a nation of "environmental excellence"? What effects will that have, if any?
by mustakissa on Sat Sep 15th, 2012 at 05:11:18 AM EST
[ Parent ]
France will remain pro-nuclear at the level of its political, technocratic, and administrative elites.

Hollande is giving up an old nuclear power station (Fessenheim). Not such a high price to pay for his coalition with the ecologists of EELV.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Sat Sep 15th, 2012 at 07:25:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Sounds a bit like what Sweden did
by mustakissa on Sat Sep 15th, 2012 at 12:40:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
But there was talk about bringing the share of nuclear down from 75% to 50%. That's not just Fessenheim. And talk about decarbonization. Combine that with less nuclear and one gets a 'windy' feeling
by mustakissa on Wed Sep 19th, 2012 at 05:53:21 AM EST
[ Parent ]
If you have problems staying anywhere, could you hire an RV, caravan or Winnebago ?

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Sat Sep 15th, 2012 at 03:00:47 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Forgot to add, though i posted it once before, that old friend and colleague Paul Gipe has the honor of opening the Husum Fair with Germany's excuse for an Environment Minister.

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin
by Crazy Horse on Sun Sep 16th, 2012 at 01:11:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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