Wind Turbines in the Electrical Grid: Wind Energy Variations
The vast majority of the installed power of wind turbines in the world is grid connected, i.e. the turbines feed their electricity directly into the public electrical grid.
Wind Energy Production During a Fine Summer Week
Denmark with ELSAM supply area
Wind presently covers about 20 per cent of the electricity consumption in the Western part of Denmark.The ELSAM electricity supply area comprises the Western part of Denmark with the Jutland Peninsula and the neighbouring island of Fyn. The area has a population of 3 million.
Power Output from Wind Turbines
The graph above shows a summer week of electricity output from the 650 MW (megawatts) of wind turbines installed in the Western part of Denmark. The blue curve at the top left shows the power output on 25 June 1997, while the orange curve shows the output the preceding day.
Electrical power consumption was 2,700 MW at the time this curve was printed from the power company control centre. Wind was supplying 270 MW i.e. wind was supplying exactly 10 per cent of the electricity consumption of 3 million people at 13:45 hours when we visited the control centre.
Wind Matches Daily Electricity Consumption Patterns
At the bottom of the graph you can see the power output of the five preceding days. On average, the month of June has the lowest wind power output during the year in Denmark. Some days of fresh winds, however, began in the early morning hours of 24 June.
The typical weather pattern is that winds are low at night, and higher during the day, as you can see from the five days of moderate winds.
This means that wind electricity generally fits well into the electricity consumption pattern, i.e. wind electricity tends to be more valuable to the electrical grid systems than if it were being produced at a random level.
© Copyright 1997-2003 Danish Wind Industry Association
Updated 19 September 2003
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