Giant Turbine Offers 20% Efficiency Boost

ATS giant wind turbine tower photo

Image credit: Mecal
Taller Turbines Offer Greater Returns
Sometimes bigger really is better - at least where wind energy is concerned. It might not be quite the size of the 9MW Aerogenerator wind turbine, or even B&Q;'s 2MW turbine in the UK - but a new turbine just built near Cologne, German, is claiming efficiency boosts as high as 20% simply because of a taller tower.
Here's more from Renewable Energy Access on the imposing new wind turbine tower:

Officially grid-connected and set to work this week in Germany is a new wind tower from ATS. The novel tower construction allows very high hub heights that may increase a turbine's yield by 20% or more. With its hub height of 133 meters (436 feet), the system has an overall height of 180 meters (590 feet).

"This is a great day for wind energy." said Frans Brughuis, Managing Director of the tower construction specialist Advanced Tower Systems (ATS). "Now the pilot project can demonstrate the high cost-effectiveness and efficiency of the ATS concept," The system, one of the largest wind energy systems with hybrid tower in the world, is installed at Germany's Windtest test field at Grevenbroich, near Cologne.

The lower section of the innovative tower consists of narrow concrete pre-fabricated parts (76.5 meters concrete from ATS), and the upper section of conventional steel components 55 meters steel (Siemens). Atop the tower is a Siemens SWP 2.3 megawatt nacelle with a 93 meter diameter rotor.

Somehow I suspect such towering monoliths are unlikely to make the NIMBY crowd happy - but a 20% boost is a 20% boost - and the more energy we get, the less towers we need to build. Right?

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