Archive for the ‘wind’ Category

Image credit: Equinor, Via GWPF

Guest reblog of a post written by Andrew Montford at the GWPF

Yesterday, I wrote about the financial travails of the Kincardine Floating Windfarm and the eye watering bill that is going to have to be paid for its construction. The cost of floating offshore wind power is, it seems, going to be high.

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Boris Johnson wants us to set our gaze beyond the coronavirus pandemic to contemplate a future when our homes are powered by wind alone.

Is he tilting at windmills like Don Quixote? Victor Hill @ Master Investor is asking.

The vision thing

Right now, the British prime minister’s in-tray is full – but one of the items requiring his keen attention is the UK’s commitment to transition to a net carbon neutral economy by 2050, as decreed by his predecessor, Mrs May.

During his digital address to the virtual reality Conservative Party Conference 2020, beamed through cyberspace on 06 October, one of the key themes was to build back better by harnessing a valuable resource which Britain possesses in abundance: wind.

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Something else for the usual miserablists to claim will be even worse after Brexit.

NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT

By Paul Homewood

h/t Joe Public

image

https://twitter.com/ng_eso/status/1316398489363001344?s=20

This is astonishing for a number of reasons:

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Time for another airing of the usual tedious waffle about wind powering x number of homes, ignoring its chronic intermittency and tendency to almost disappear for hours, or even days, at a time. The greater the dependency on it, the greater the potential disruption to electricity supply. Fantasies of ‘slowing climate change’ are just that: fantasies.
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Boris Johnson will promise to “build back greener” in his conference speech on Tuesday, announcing new investment in offshore wind energy, reports BBC News.

The PM will pledge £160m to upgrade ports and factories for building turbines, setting a target for wind to produce enough electricity to power the equivalent of every UK home by 2030.

The plan aims to create 2,000 jobs in construction and support 60,000 more.

He will say the UK is to become “the world leader in clean wind energy”.

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Himalayan region


The researchers say “It’s likely that these results translate to other high mountain chains”. Above 4,500 metres dust is found to be ahead of other forms of pollution.
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Dust blowing onto high mountains in the western Himalayas is a bigger factor than previously thought in hastening the melting of snow there, researchers show in a study published Oct. 5 in Nature Climate Change.

That’s because dust—lots of it in the Himalayas—absorbs sunlight, heating the snow that surrounds it, reports Phys.org.

“It turns out that dust blowing hundreds of miles from parts of Africa and Asia and landing at very high elevations has a broad impact on the snow cycle in a region that is home to one of the largest masses of snow and ice on Earth,” said Yun Qian, atmospheric scientist at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

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Cyclones in Jupiter’s atmosphere [image credit: NASA]


At the south pole of Jupiter lurks a striking sight—even for a gas giant planet covered in colorful bands that sports a red spot larger than the Earth, says Phys.org.

Down near the south pole of the planet, mostly hidden from the prying eyes of humans, is a collection of swirling storms arranged in an unusually geometric pattern.

Since they were first spotted by NASA’s Juno space probe in 2019, the storms have presented something of a mystery to scientists.

The storms are analogous to hurricanes on Earth. However, on our planet, hurricanes do not gather themselves at the poles and twirl around each other in the shape of a pentagon or hexagon, as do Jupiter’s curious storms.

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Admitting the problem is a start, but not installing the turbines in the first place is obviously the most effective solution. Reducing deaths and injuries would hardly be a triumph.
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Painting one blade of a wind turbine black could cut wind farms’ fatal bird strikes by up to 70%, reports BBC News.

Painting one blade of a wind turbine black could cut bird strikes at wind farms by up to 70%, a study suggests.

Birds colliding with the structures has long been considered to be one of the main negative impacts of onshore wind farms, the authors observed.

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This is from a press release via Green Car Congress. The maker ‘estimates that its technology would be able to achieve a carbon emissions reduction of 25% for this vessel’.
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Norsepower Oy Ltd., the leading global provider of auxiliary wind propulsion systems, and SEA-CARGO, leading logistics provider in the North Sea market, announced an agreement to install two of Norsepower’s largest Rotor Sails (earlier post) on board the SC Connector, a sidedoor Ro-Ro.

The agreement aso marks the installation of the world’s first tiltable Rotor Sail, showcasing the innovative design adaptations that can be made for individual vessel requirements.

The SC Connector, a 12,251 gross tonne (GT) Ro-Ro cargo vessel operates in the North Sea, which allows for some of the most favorable wind conditions for Rotor Sails.

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Credit: infobarrel.com


Super-rotation of its thick atmosphere, that is. The researchers believe their findings could also be a model for tidally-locked exoplanets with atmospheres.

An international research team led by Takeshi Horinouchi of Hokkaido University has revealed that this ‘super-rotation’ is maintained near the equator by atmospheric tidal waves formed from solar heating on the planet’s dayside and cooling on its nightside.

Closer to the poles, however, atmospheric turbulence and other kinds of waves have a more pronounced effect. The study was published online in Science on April 23.

Venus rotates very slowly, taking 243 Earth days to rotate once around its axis. Despite this very slow rotation, Venus’ atmosphere rotates westward 60 times faster than its planetary rotation.

This super-rotation increases with altitude, taking only four Earth days to circulate around the entire planet towards the top of the cloud cover. The fast-moving atmosphere transports heat from the planet’s dayside to nightside, reducing the temperature differences between the two hemispheres.

“Since the super-rotation was discovered in the 1960s, however, the mechanism behind its forming and maintenance has been a long-standing mystery,” says Horinouchi.

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Who could have guessed turbines might block the wind going to other turbines?

H/T Sasha Via Bloomberg:

The world’s biggest developer of offshore wind farms issued a reality check to the industry, saying it has overestimated the amount of time its turbines are generating electricity.

Copenhagen-based Orsted A/S announced that offshore wind farms wouldn’t produce quite as much power as previously forecast. The adjustment could shave millions of dollars of revenue a year off each project. It’s also a warning to other developers who may have used similar analysis to estimate the economics of their projects.

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Saturn’s aurora


The report says: ‘Density decreases with altitude, and the rate of decrease depends on temperature.’ Or is it the other way round, i.e. density influences temperature?

The upper layers in the atmospheres of gas giants—Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune—are hot, just like Earth’s, says Phys.org.

But unlike Earth, the Sun is too far from these outer planets to account for the high temperatures. Their heat source has been one of the great mysteries of planetary science.

New analysis of data from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft finds a viable explanation for what’s keeping the upper layers of Saturn, and possibly the other gas giants, so hot: auroras at the planet’s north and south poles.

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A senior academic reckons the 20 year design life of wind turbines is too short – “we should be doing better” – and means they don’t even qualify as infrastructure, and that offshore wind power is “ferociously costly and has a big carbon footprint”. He didn’t mention the intermittency and weather dependence, as they’re not fixable by humans.
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True carbon costs of offshore wind are not being declared in order to make the solution seem more environmentally acceptable than it actually is, according to a leading academic.

Cambridge University senior teaching associate Jim Platts is a former partner at Gifford [now Ramboll] and has focused his academic career on manufacturing issues.

He told New Civil Engineer: “The concept of offshore wind is being sold as being environmentally friendly but the reality is that it is ferociously costly and has a big carbon footprint.”

Platts believes that the energy companies developing offshore wind farms are hiding full details about their carbon footprints and is calling on the sector to be more transparent about them.

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Credit: geologycafe.com [click on image to enlarge]


That’s the idea anyway. They expect warmer weather to lead to drier conditions upto 2025. Perhaps a bit odd on the face of it, as the steamy tropics have rainforests whereas icy Antarctica is the driest continent on Earth.
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A new decade-long weather forecast made by Germany’s Meteorological Service (DWD) is supposed to improve the country’s climate change adaptation capabilities, says Clean Energy Wire.

“Our new forecast for the next ten years fills the gap between existing climate forecasts for the next months and long-term climate projections until the end of the century,” said DWD climatology head Tobias Fuchs.

The forecast project, supported by Germany’s research ministry, could be used by policymakers, business leaders and others to adapt their investment decisions to climate change, he added.

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Credit: Wikipedia


This contradicts climate alarmist claims such as: Global Warming Is Messing with the Jet Stream. Whether 40 years of data is enough to establish what is ‘normal’, is another matter. The fastest jetstream on record of 231 mph has only just been set, we’re told.
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Rapid Arctic warming has not led to a “wavier” jet stream around the mid-latitudes in recent decades, pioneering new research has shown.

Scientists from the University of Exeter have studied the extent to which Arctic amplification—the faster rate of warming in the Arctic compared to places farther south—has affected the fluctuation of the jet stream’s winding course over the North Hemisphere, reports Phys.org.

Recent studies have suggested the warming Arctic region has led to a “wavier” jet stream—which can lead to extreme weather conditions striking the US and Europe.

However, the new study by Dr. Russell Blackport and Professor James Screen, shows that Arctic warming does not drive a more meandering jet stream.

Instead, they believe any link is more likely to be a result of random fluctuations in the jet stream influencing Arctic temperatures, rather than the other way around.

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What happens to all the old wind turbines?

Posted: February 7, 2020 by oldbrew in Big Green, turbines, wind
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Recycled wind turbine tower [image credit: inhabitat.com]


Apart from becoming school playground novelty items, what else is there?
One process requires pyrolysis: ‘After first chopping up the blades, pyrolysis breaks up the composite fibres in ovens with an inert atmosphere, at about 450-700C.’
But: ‘The problem is significant amounts of energy are needed to activate the pyrolysis, which might limit its environmental usefulness.’
Indeed, if you’re obsessed with avoiding burning fuels.
Some newer turbine blades are now nearly 100m. long.

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Welcome to the wind turbine graveyard, says BBC News. It stretches a hundred metres from a bend in the North Platte River in Casper, Wyoming.

Between last September and this March, it will become the final resting place for 1,000 fibreglass turbine blades.

These blades, which have reached the end of their 25-year working lives, come from three wind farms in the north-western US state.

Each is about 90m (300ft) long, and will be cut into three, then the pieces will be stacked and buried.

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Map of prevailing trade winds over Earth [credit: Wikipedia]


A change to about 0.01% of the atmosphere is now claimed to be speeding up the oceans by making winds stronger. Really? They used to claim global warming was weakening the Pacific trade winds:
“The researchers predict another 10 percent decrease by the end of the 21st century. The effect, attributed at least in part to human-induced climate change, could disrupt food chains and reduce the biological productivity of the Pacific Ocean, scientists said.” (2006 report)

A study published today in the journal Science Advances, suggests global ocean circulation has accelerated during the past two decades, reports Phys.org.

The research team found that oceanic kinetic energy shows a statistically significant increase since early 1990s, calculating a 36-percent acceleration of global mean ocean circulation.

The trend is particularly prominent in the global tropical oceans, reaching depths of thousands of meters.

The deep-reaching acceleration of the ocean circulation is mainly induced by a planetary intensification of surface winds, authors said.

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[image credit: beforeitsnews.com]


In short, Scottish wind power often produces too much for the electricity system to handle, yet more is planned. Meanwhile the super-expensive Western Link is failing miserably to draw off the excess power. Matt Ridley is trying to blow the whistle on this fiasco in the House of Lords, with some success.

Last weekend the Italian cable manufacturing company, Prysmian, released a statement announcing to the markets that the Western Link High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) interconnector between Hunterston and Deeside had failed again, on the 10th of January, says the Renewable Energy Foundation.

This grid link, which is a joint venture between Scottish Power Transmission (SPT) and National Grid (NG), employs cables manufactured by Prysmian.

This £1 billion project has a peak transit capacity of 2.25 GW and was designed solely to facilitate the export of Scottish wind power to the English and Welsh markets.

In doing so it was expected to reduce constraint payments to wind power, payments which amount to £630m since 2010, with a record £130 million in 2019 alone.

The project was expected to come online at the end of 2015 but in fact did not become fully operational until late 2018 and has been plagued with faults ever since.

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H/T The GWPF
Same old story, but numbers keep getting bigger. This just reinforces the point that large-scale surplus electricity can’t be stored. But nobody pays non-renewable sources for switching off or reducing output when wind and/or solar are operating at or near their capacity.
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Wind farms were paid up to £3 million per day to switch off their turbines and not produce electricity last week, The Telegraph can disclose.

Energy firms were handed more than £12 million in compensation following a fault with a major power line carrying electricity to England from turbines in Scotland.

The payouts, which will ultimately be added onto consumer bills, were between 25 per cent and 80 per cent more than the firms, which own giant wind farms in Scotland, would have received had they been producing electricity, according to an analysis of official figures.

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The causes of the foehn effect in the lee of mountains [image credit: Depunity @ Wikipedia]


Foehn (Föhn) winds are an interesting climatic phenomenon that cause rapid temperature changes. They’re well-known in Alpine regions but not so much in the UK.
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The highest ever temperature recorded for the UK this late in the year was early on Sunday morning in the Scottish Highlands, reports LBC News.

A Met Office observation post in Cassley, in Sutherland, north Scotland, recorded a temperature of 16.8C at 3am on Sunday morning – this was well above the average nighttime temperature for that area in late December of zero degrees.

However given how early in the morning the high temperature was recorded, most people would have slept through it.

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An eye-opener for wind turbine supporters, and everyone else who has to pay for them via taxes and power bills.

PA Pundits - International

By Duggan Flanakin ~

Wind turbines continue to be the most controversial so-called “renewable” energy source worldwide. Yet, you say, wind is surely renewable. Really? Sure, the wind blows intermittently, but what if wind power actually contributes to global warming?

While the wind itself may be “renewable,” the turbines surely are not. Arcadia Power reports that the widely used GE 1.5-megawatt (MW) turbine, is a 164-ton monster with 116-foot blades on a 212-foot tower that weighs another 71 tons. The Vestas V90, which has 148-foot blades on a 262-foot tower, has a total weight of about 267 tons. That is just ONE TURBINE!

How are these giants constructed? The U.S. Geological Survey, citing the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, states that turbines are predominantly made of steel (which comprises 71 to 79 percent of total turbine mass), fiberglass, resin, or plastic (11 to 16 percent), iron or cast iron (5 to…

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