Archive for the ‘wind’ Category

arctic-sea-ice

Arctic sea ice [image credit: Geoscience Daily]

‘New research is pouring cold water on once-hot theory’ – WashPo. Researchers refer to ‘overestimation’. (Weird in this context at least tends to mean something like ‘not well understood’).
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An influential, highly publicized theory — that a warming Arctic is causing more intense winter outbreaks of cold and snow in midlatitudes — is hitting resistance from an ongoing sequence of studies, including the most comprehensive polar modeling to date, says the Washington Post.

The idea, first put forth in a 2012 paper by Jennifer Francis, now at the Woodwell Climate Research Center, and Stephen Vavrus, at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, is that two well-established trends — Arctic amplification (intensified global warming at higher latitudes) and depleted sea ice — can force the polar jet stream to dip farther south, thus causing more intense bouts of winter weather than might have otherwise occurred.

Over the past decade, this hypothesis sparked widespread public interest and scientific debate, as various high-profile cold waves and snow onslaughts hit North America and Eurasia, including a deadly, prolonged cold wave in Texas last February.

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Thomas_Fire

Smoke from forest fires in Southern California [image credit: NASA]

Will this be the end of climate alarmists feeding their confirmation biases over these events, resulting in the usual hysteria against atmospheric gases generated by humans? Almost certainly not, as they can still cling to the notion that the summer fires aren’t mostly due to lightning, arson or faulty power lines. Another report says: ‘Further analyses suggested that large fires were not associated with higher temperatures’.
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A team of researchers affiliated with multiple institutions in the U.S. and one in Canada has found that the increasing number of large fires in Southern California during the autumn and winter months is mostly due to the Santa Ana winds and power line failures, rather than rising temperatures, reports Phys.org.

In their paper published in the journal Science Advances, the group describes their study of fires in Southern California going back to 1948.

Large wildfires in California regularly make the news because of their magnitude and ferocity.

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golden-eagle

Golden eagle in Scotland [image credit: argyllholidays.com]

Hardly surprising, but the destruction of the countryside will continue regardless.

H/T Windwatch UK
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Wind farms are shrinking golden eagles habitats as they are afraid of the blades, a study has found.

The birds of prey are eight times less likely to fly near turbines when they are rotating compared with when they are switched off, scientists from the ecological company Natural Research Projects have found.

It is thought the birds are avoiding areas where turbines are situated because the noise and movement makes them feel threatened.

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Featured Image -- 40520

Feldheim village near Berlin, Germany.

Subsidies drying up. Public resistance to wind turbines in the neighbourhood. Is the climate steamroller running out of puff in Germany?
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The German wind power industry is suffering setback after setback, says The GWPF.

Hardly any new turbines are being built, and more and more old wind turbines are being phased out. Now wind industry lobbyists are calling for new subsidies and construction rules to be relaxed.

In the Free State of Bavaria there is almost nothing going on when it comes to wind power.

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windger

German Chancellor Merkel surveys an offshore wind site [image credit: evwind.es]

Wind ‘farms’ are allergic to each other it seems, sometimes leading to sizable drops in output. Awkward when space isn’t unlimited, some of the best sites are already taken, and the plan is to multiply the existing fleets. Weather dependency is even greater than expected.
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The expansion of wind energy in the German Bight and the Baltic Sea has accelerated enormously in recent years, TechXplore.

The first systems went into operation in 2008. Today, wind turbines with an output of around 8,000 megawatts operate in German waters, which corresponds to around eight nuclear power plants.

But space is limited. For this reason, wind farms are sometimes built very close to one another.

A team led by Dr. Naveed Akhtar from Helmholtz Zentrum Hereon has found that wind speeds at the downstream windfarm are significantly slowed down.

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VAWT

One of many vertical axis wind turbine designs

Vertical axis wind turbines aren’t new, but early reliability problems are supposed to have been largely ironed out now. The gearbox and generator are close to the ground, and they require less land per unit, but there’s less wind lower down. Given that we’re stuck with the wind power obsession for now, they may be worth a try if the computer simulations are anything to go by.
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The now-familiar sight of traditional propeller wind turbines could be replaced in the future with wind farms containing more compact and efficient vertical turbines, says TechXplore.

New research from Oxford Brookes University has found that the vertical turbine design is far more efficient than traditional turbines in large scale wind farms, and when set in pairs the vertical turbines increase each other’s performance by up to 15%.

A research team from the School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics (ECM) at Oxford Brookes led by Professor Iakovos Tzanakis conducted an in-depth study using more than 11,500 hours of computer simulation to show that wind farms can perform more efficiently by substituting the traditional propeller type Horizontal Axis Wind Turbines (HAWTs), for compact Vertical Axis Wind Turbines (VAWTs).

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big-greenSome electricity consumers may feel like muttering obscenities if they see the figures. Meanwhile the BBC insists renewables are now cheaper than coal.
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The Global Warming Policy Forum has condemned what it called the “obscenity” of windfarm subsidies and has called for a complete rethink of energy policy.

GWPF research has shown that just six offshore windfarms are now sharing £1.6 billion pounds in subsidies between them every year.

Three receive annual subsidies of over a quarter of a billion pounds each year.

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Credit: Vortex Bladeless


The makers say: ‘Vortex Bladeless is a vortex induced vibration resonant wind generator. It harnesses wind energy from a phenomenon of vorticity called Vortex Shedding. Basically, bladeless technology consists of a cylinder fixed vertically with an elastic rod. The cylinder oscillates on a wind range, which then generates electricity through an alternator system.’
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New tech developments are happening in the wind power sector, says ZME Science.

Wind power is mostly associated with sweeping white blades, taking advantage of the strong gusts that blow over the land or the sea.

But what if we could forget about the blades and even the wind and instead just have a turbine?

That’s the idea of a group of European companies, who have come up with new ways to expand wind energy without the limitations of a conventional turbine.

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The message hasn’t reached South Korea, now proposing a wind ‘farm’ *SEVEN* times bigger than anything yet seen.

STOP THESE THINGS

Oh yes, they’re the great pretenders: useless in calm weather or after the sun goes down, wind and solar can never really compete with coal, nuclear or gas.

And anyone trying to convince you otherwise, ought to be gently encouraged to seek psychiatric help.

Especially after America’s big freeze left millions of wind and solar ‘powered’ Texans freezing in the dark.

Comparing ever-reliable coal, nuclear or gas with never-reliable wind and solar is patent nonsense; and only an eco-loon or renewable energy rent seeker entertains that process.

In the latter case, it’s because the wind and solar rort depends upon the engineered pretence that wind and solar are cheaper than the rest.

Ever insightful, Donn Dears takes a look at the number games played by America’s wind and solar crowd in their efforts to pretend to be playing in the big league.

Distorting the Levelized Cost of Electricity
Power for…

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The UK and EU seem determined to make these obvious power generation
mistakes that will inevitably lead to much higher prices and blackouts, sooner or later.

STOP THESE THINGS

Sitting freezing or boiling in the dark provides a moment to consider where one’s electricity comes from. Californians, South Australian and now Texans have all enjoyed the experience, one way or another.

The common thread, of course, is an obsession with sunshine-dependent solar and/or weather-dependent wind power.

The belief that we’re just a heartbeat (and a few TWhs worth of lithium batteries) away from an all wind and sun powered future is not just delusional, it’s dangerous.

Modern, civilised society depends upon having power as and when we need it. Not merely those occasions when Mother Nature feels inclined to deliver it.

The temporary loss of electricity to provide light, heating or air-conditioning might be an irritating inconvenience. But for the aged, the infirm and those on life support it’s no laughing matter.

Then, behind the curtain, there are a raft of critical systems – including communications (think mobile phone…

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The global race to produce hydrogen offshore

Posted: February 13, 2021 by oldbrew in Energy, hydrogen, wind
Tags: ,

Offshore wind farm [image credit: Wikipedia]


Production will obviously be as intermittent and therefore as unreliable as the wind itself. And how does the hydrogen get back onshore? Yet more expense is implied. Or if the plan is to use ‘excess’ energy, that suggests power already being sent to the national grid, so why not produce the hydrogen onshore?
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Last year was a record breaker for the UK’s wind power industry, says BBC News.

Wind generation reached its highest ever level, at 17.2GW on 18 December, while wind power achieved its biggest share of UK energy production, at 60% on 26 August [Talkshop comment: cherrypicking].

Yet occasionally the huge offshore wind farms pump out far more electricity than the country needs – such as during the first Covid-19 lockdown last spring when demand for electricity sagged.

But what if you could use that excess power for something else?

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A New Form of Space Weather: Earth Wind

Posted: February 12, 2021 by oldbrew in moon, solar system dynamics, wind

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A water creation surprise here.

Spaceweather.com

Feb. 12, 2021: The sun is windy. Every day, 24/7, a breeze of electrified gas blows away from the sun faster than a million mph. Solar wind sparks beautiful auroras around the poles of Earth, sculpts the tails of comets, and scours the surface of the Moon.

Would you believe, Earth is windy, too? Our own planet produces a breeze of electrified gas. It’s like the solar wind, only different, and it may have important implications for space weather on the Moon.

“Earth wind” comes from the axes of our planet. Every day, 24/7, fountains of gas shoot into space from the poles. The leakage is tiny compared to Earth’s total atmosphere, but it is enough to fill the magnetosphere with a riot of rapidly blowing charged particles. Ingredients include ionized hydrogen, helium, oxygen and nitrogen.

Once a month, the Moon gets hit by a blast of Earth wind. It…

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Pipistrelle bat [image credit: Drahkrub @ Wikipedia]


Their activity in the danger area seems to be mainly on nights with light winds and warm temperatures, but pinpointing the most relevant sites is not straightforward.
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One of the most abundant bats in Europe may be attracted to wind turbines, a new study shows.

The activity of common pipistrelle bats was monitored at 23 British wind farms and similar “control” locations close by without turbines, reports Phys.org.

Activity was around a third higher at turbines than at control locations, and two thirds of occasions with high activity were recorded at turbines rather than the controls.

The reasons for this are not clear.

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Image credit: ScienceDaily


This has echoes of the ice age dust/albedo theory – with no CO2 feedbacks – proposed by Ralph Ellis a few years ago. The article concludes: ‘The result thus has the potential to aid the understanding of the abrupt warming and cooling periods during the ice ages called Dansgaard/Oeschger events which bear the marks of climate tipping points.’

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Every late winter and early spring, huge dust storms swirled across the bare and frozen landscapes of Europe during the coldest periods of the latest ice age, says Phys.org.

These paleo-tempests, which are seldom matched in our modern climate frequently covered Western Europe in some of the thickest layers of ice-age dust found anywhere previously on Earth.

This is demonstrated by a series of new estimates of the sedimentation and accumulation rates of European loess layers obtained by Senior Research Scientist Denis-Didier Rousseau from Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris, France, and colleagues.

The work, which is published in Quaternary Science Reviews is part of the TiPES project on tipping points in the Earth system, coordinated by The University of Copenhagen.

In the study Denis-Didier Rousseau and colleagues reinterpreted layers in loess from Nussloch, Germany.

Loess is a fine-silt-sized earth type found all over the world. It mainly consists of aeolian sediments, which are materials transported by the wind from dry areas without vegetation such as deserts of any type, moraines, or dried-out river beds.

Within the aeolian sediments, darker layers of paleosol alternate within the loess layers. Every layer in the loess represents a shift in climatic conditions.

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Boeing 767 flight deck [image credit: Continental Airlines]


In the midst of pandemic-related hard times, airline survival means looking for fuel savings ahead of trivia like emissions of harmless trace gases. A mix of nature and new tech might do the trick.
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Airlines could save fuel and reduce emissions on transatlantic flights by hitching a better ride on the jet stream, new research has shown.

Scientists at the University of Reading have found that commercial flights between New York and London last winter could have used up to 16% less fuel if they had made better use of the fast-moving winds at altitude, says TechXplore.

New satellites will soon allow transatlantic flights to be tracked more accurately while remaining a safe distance apart.

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NuScale reactor (SMR) design [credit:
NuScale / Wikipedia –
click on image to enlarge]

All part of looking to invent a hydrogen power market in the UK, to help solve problems that are only known to exist in failing climate models.
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Combining wind power with a nuclear small modular reactor (SMR) could see energy production re-start at Wylfa in North Wales by late 2027 under plans presented by Shearwater Energy, says New Civil Engineer.

Shearwater has said that the proposal would involve construction of a wind-SMR and hydrogen production hybrid energy project, which it says would be located on a different site to the Wylfa Newydd nuclear power station, planned by Horizon, that stalled when Hitachi pulled support last year.

The Shearwater plant could provide 3GW of zero carbon energy and is also expected to produce over 3M.kg of green hydrogen per year for use by the UK’s transport sector.

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Hornsea wind project


Is anyone in UK government circles going to take this seriously, as compensation (constraint) payments spiral upwards? The perpetual mismatch between supply and demand of wind power can only get worse as more of it is built. Energy storage can’t resolve these problems, only reduce them slightly at best.
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Enough wind power was curtailed in 2020 to power a million homes for a year, reports Energy Live News.

A new report produced by Lane Clark & Peacock LLP (LCP) says primarily as a result of network constraints, last year saw a total of 3.6TWh of wind power shut off and wasted.

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‘this is data covering just 800 days, and here we have 265 occasions where the power loss exceeds 500MW.’ = almost one day in every three, on average. [Links to parts 2 and 3 at the end of the post].

PA Pundits - International

By Anton Lang ~

Introduction

We have all heard that wind power generation is intermittent, that it goes up and down on a daily basis. However, is that really all that much of a problem, and if so, how big a problem is it? We have also heard that constructing more wind plants will go towards alleviating this problem. Is that correct? Or will that only make the problem worse?

Well, it is in fact quite a large problem, and constructing more of those wind plants is making the problem worse.

Macarthur Wind Plant In Victoria Australia

For many years now, I have been looking at wind power generation here in Australia, and in fact recording and keeping wind generation data on a daily basis now for more than four years. After looking at this data on a daily basis for so long, I could see that it went up…

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Windfarm objection in Galloway


The suspicion may exist that the ruling Scottish Nationalist Party never seems to win in this sparsely populated region, so is not inclined to much sympathy for its residents when making decisions on the many windfarm applications.
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Residents are moving away from parts of south-west Scotland because they are losing much of the local landscape to wind farm developments, it has been claimed.

Now Trevor and Elaine Procter, who live at Knockvennie, near Dumfries, are urging people to contact local councillors to object to the “tsunami” of planning applications for such developments, reports The National (via Wind Watch).

They have lived in their current home for 12-years, and Trevor said the effect on locals was comparable to the Highland Clearances.

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If the wind turbine noises don’t get you, there are the smoky biomass plants instead — or as well. Welcome to your clean green future?
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AMSTERDAM – The first Dutch climate refugees are a fact, says De Telegraaf (via the GWPF).

Not because of wet feet, but because citizens cannot cope with the noise of wind farms.

Residents close to biomass power stations also complain bitterly.

Are health and the environment in the Netherlands subordinate to our climate goals?

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