Author Topic: Wind turbine destruction  (Read 37012 times)

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Offline zapta

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #50 on: January 04, 2015, 02:17:09 pm »
So, even if they do occasionally go wrong, they still represent a good option.

They go wrong whenever the wind stops.  Zero output.
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Offline electrophiliate

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #51 on: January 04, 2015, 02:17:43 pm »
@dannyf.

Apologies for not spending hours wading through reports and comparing the various categories of energy subsidies to arrive at a detailed conclusion before expressing a casual curiosity over how subsidies for fossil fuels stack up to subsidies for renewable energies?

Exploration subsidies are only a fraction of the total. A subsidy for exploration is still a subsidy for fossil fuels if petroleum exploration is a priority for Geoscience Australia. Classifying it as such and questioning its usefulness because of its contribution to climate change does not necessarily warrant a comparison of logic to shutting down all scientific research in Australia simply because some other research is subsidized. If exploration for optimal wind farm sites was a priority for Geoscience Australia, then that would be a subsidity for renewable energy.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2015, 02:35:42 pm by electrophiliate »
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Offline G7PSK

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #52 on: January 04, 2015, 03:13:38 pm »
Some of those claims for fossil fuel subsidy are far fetched to say the least, all business get tax relief on invested expenditure whether it is for exploration or just building a new works or office or installing production machinery, the other subsidy they are whittling on about are fantasy claims for carbon emissions which before climate change regulations just did not exist. You can only positively claim that something is a subsidy if the money is forcibly lifted from the public's pocket and then handed out to keep a business afloat artificially.     
 

Offline amyk

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #53 on: January 04, 2015, 03:14:42 pm »
I've looked at the videos of these things catching fire, and one would think that a piece of equipment consisting of not much more than a fan and a generator should be less flammable than that...
 

Offline tom66

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #54 on: January 04, 2015, 04:09:17 pm »
I've looked at the videos of these things catching fire, and one would think that a piece of equipment consisting of not much more than a fan and a generator should be less flammable than that...

It's a lot more complicated than that. Here's a video of one:


At the very least, there is a gearbox, braking system, generator, pitch and yaw adjustments, power control, etc.

Though remarkably less complicated than many other power generation systems, like coal or nuclear. Probably only solar is less complicated.

What I find funny is that for the yaw adjustment, the turbine can get itself in a twist. That one can only turn three times before it has to undo itself. I wonder if they considered using some kind of ring commutator system, but decided it was not worth the expense.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2015, 04:11:15 pm by tom66 »
 

Offline dannyf

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #55 on: January 04, 2015, 04:11:28 pm »
Quote
Apologies for not spending hours wading through reports and comparing the various categories of energy subsidies to arrive at a detailed conclusion before expressing a casual curiosity over how subsidies for fossil fuels stack up to subsidies for renewable energies?

it is not reasonable to expect anyone, you included, to thoroughly study a subject before expressing your view. It is, however, reasonable to expect an adult to think critically of any subject.

Quote
Exploration subsidies are only a fraction of the total.

Then why mention it? Just mention a material, substantive subject that you have objection on and then focus you debate on that.

Quote
A subsidy for exploration is still a subsidy for fossil fuels if petroleum exploration is a priority for Geoscience Australia.

I would posit that all subsidies are evil but some are necessary. There are things a nation absolutely have to have a steady supply on, like food, and energy. Other examples are national defense and law enforcement - two 100% subsidies services.

I think there is probably some public good / national interest for Australia to have secured energy supply. Another form of subsidy would be education and scientific research: think about how much everyone, wind farms included, benefited from that.

Quote
Classifying it as such and questioning its usefulness because of its contribution to climate change does not necessarily warrant a comparison of logic to shutting down all scientific research in Australia simply because some other research is subsidized.

Why not?

Quote
If exploration for optimal wind farm sites was a priority for Geoscience Australia, then that would be a subsidity for renewable energy.

I don't know what exploration activities Geoscience Australia performs but if it benefits a particular private entity, that would be wrong.

The whole discussion misses the point. We have a few criteria for our energy sources: it needs to be inexpensive, widely available and incredibly reliable. Those "green" energy fails quite miserably in availability and reliability measurements and economics in terms of total generation costs - they are the least expensive form of electricity in terms of marginal generation costs.

But the poor reliability makes them incredibly costly for the grid / base load perspective, as well as the end user perspective. Think of your needing someone who cooks for you every day - you have no other sources for meals.

You can hire a guy for $10/hr and he will always show up on time, etc.

Alternatively, you can hire another guy for $1/hr. He will not show up on sunny or calm days - he's going to the beach.

What do you think a reasonable person would do?

Now, think what will happen if the government demands that a certain percentage of your labor force consists of the 2nd type of guys.
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Offline dannyf

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #56 on: January 04, 2015, 04:12:52 pm »
Quote
a piece of equipment consisting of not much more than a fan and a generator

Far more complicated than that. The amount of electronics and engineering going into those things is quite amazing and some are still unresolved at this point.
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Offline zapta

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #57 on: January 04, 2015, 04:15:08 pm »
@Stigaard  I am moving to Denmark! Negative electricity prices !   HiHi

Actually electricity prices there are very high, even higher than Germany (another 'green' champion) and double than France (nuclear)

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Offline mamalala

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #58 on: January 04, 2015, 04:27:00 pm »
Some of those claims for fossil fuel subsidy are far fetched to say the least, all business get tax relief on invested expenditure whether it is for exploration or just building a new works or office or installing production machinery, the other subsidy they are whittling on about are fantasy claims for carbon emissions which before climate change regulations just did not exist. You can only positively claim that something is a subsidy if the money is forcibly lifted from the public's pocket and then handed out to keep a business afloat artificially.   

Plus, just comparing the amount of $$ alone isn't helpful either. Like, electricity generation system A receives $1bn in susidies over one year, system B receives $2bn. Which one got more? Well, most people would just say "system B". However, what if system A generated 1TWh during that year, and system B generated 10TWh? Then it becomes clear that system B got less subsidies when the "usefulness" is considered.

So, how do the numbers for subsidies compare between renewables, nuclear and fossil, when it comes to the amount of energy produced? _That_ is the important metric, not the raw $$ number alone.

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Offline Stigaard

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #59 on: January 04, 2015, 04:43:14 pm »
@Stigaard  I am moving to Denmark! Negative electricity prices !   HiHi

Actually electricity prices there are very high, even higher than Germany (another 'green' champion) and double than France (nuclear)


Yes, agree don't move to Denmark for the energy pricing, though most of it is actually taxes, from my last energy bill I payed 0.4dkr / kwh = 0.065 U.S. dollars however I payed 1.54dkr/kwh = 0.25 U.S. dollars in taxes. The high tax is there to generate an incentive for saving on the energy consumption and of cause as a way to collect taxes in general.
 

Offline G7PSK

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #60 on: January 04, 2015, 05:01:53 pm »
I've looked at the videos of these things catching fire, and one would think that a piece of equipment consisting of not much more than a fan and a generator should be less flammable than that...

Apart from winding varnish 200 or so litres of oil in the gearbox and fibre glass cowling's and blades plus all the plastic insulation on 11KV cables all of which burns very well and at a high enough temp. to set off the alloy gear casings.
 

Offline zapta

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #61 on: January 04, 2015, 05:10:43 pm »
AFAIK, a common failure mode is overspeed (due to strong winds).

They should cover them with tarps before the storm. Problem solved.
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Offline zapta

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #62 on: January 04, 2015, 05:11:37 pm »
So, how do the numbers for subsidies compare between renewables, nuclear and fossil, when it comes to the amount of energy produced? _That_ is the important metric, not the raw $$ number alone.

Very well said.
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Online Zero999

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #63 on: January 04, 2015, 05:20:33 pm »
Yes, agree don't move to Denmark for the energy pricing, though most of it is actually taxes, from my last energy bill I payed 0.4dkr / kwh = 0.065 U.S. dollars however I payed 1.54dkr/kwh = 0.25 U.S. dollars in taxes. The high tax is there to generate an incentive for saving on the energy consumption and of cause as a way to collect taxes in general.
Where do those taxes go to? Perhaps they green taxes which subsidise green energy?

That's also an oversimplification because people in Denmark generally earn more compared to those in India and China (the cheapest countries for energy).

Denmark also has less pollution than the countries where energy is cheapest so it's worth paying extra.
 

Offline zapta

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #64 on: January 04, 2015, 05:27:28 pm »
Where do those taxes go to? Perhaps they green taxes which subsidise green energy?

That's also an oversimplification because people in Denmark generally earn more compared to those in India and China (the cheapest countries for energy).

Denmark also has less pollution than the countries where energy is cheapest so it's worth paying extra.

A fair comparison would be to the rest of Europe.
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Offline Stigaard

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #65 on: January 04, 2015, 05:30:07 pm »
Where do those taxes go to? Perhaps they green taxes which subsidise green energy?

That's also an oversimplification because people in Denmark generally earn more compared to those in India and China (the cheapest countries for energy).

Denmark also has less pollution than the countries where energy is cheapest so it's worth paying extra.
I am not sure whether part of it is actually locked for renewable or whether it just goes into the big pot.
Another important part to note is that companies can be tax exempt from a large part of these taxes on the part of the energy that is not used for heating or illumination.
 

Offline Bloch

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #66 on: January 04, 2015, 05:32:39 pm »

Well if you take that graph in reverse then you have power outages :-DD Nothing is free :) There have only been one or maybe 2 in my life time !! And we have never been asked to use less power in certain hours
 

Offline Stigaard

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #67 on: January 04, 2015, 05:35:07 pm »
Where do those taxes go to? Perhaps they green taxes which subsidise green energy?

That's also an oversimplification because people in Denmark generally earn more compared to those in India and China (the cheapest countries for energy).

Denmark also has less pollution than the countries where energy is cheapest so it's worth paying extra.

A fair comparison would be to the rest of Europe.
Even that would not necessarily be fair, the average salary in Denmark(3122€) compared to for example Germany(2054) is vastly different, and just to go to an extreme comparing to for example Bulgaria (332€). All of these countries members of the EU
(source http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_European_countries_by_average_wage)
 

Offline dannyf

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #68 on: January 04, 2015, 05:39:25 pm »
Quote
Well if you take that graph in reverse then you have power outages

That way, you also get GDP growth too.

Does that means burning coal stimulates growth?

:)
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Offline tom66

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #69 on: January 04, 2015, 05:45:16 pm »
Apart from winding varnish 200 or so litres of oil in the gearbox and fibre glass cowling's and blades plus all the plastic insulation on 11KV cables all of which burns very well and at a high enough temp. to set off the alloy gear casings.

Oddly, most wind turbines use low voltages, around 400 to 800V, which is stepped up externally. I'm not sure what the rationale behind this is, perhaps it reduces the cost of the generator and the losses over about 200ft are mostly negligible.
 

Offline Bloch

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #70 on: January 04, 2015, 05:45:56 pm »
Last I heard for one fire of a turbine was that the brakes failed

New (>2MW) Vestas disk brake is not a break !! It is more like a parking brake. If the turbine needs to stop it have to turn at least 2 wings in "reverse" angel. It is part of the safty that all 3 wings are 3 different systems.
And I dont think that is only Vestas but for all big turbines.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2015, 05:50:04 pm by Bloch »
 

Offline Bloch

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #71 on: January 04, 2015, 05:53:23 pm »
Oddly, most wind turbines use low voltages, around 400 to 800V, which is stepped up externally. I'm not sure what the rationale behind this is, perhaps it reduces the cost of the generator and the losses over about 200ft are mostly negligible.

Simens turbines did at some point have the transformer inside the middle tower. Not sure if that is the case today.
 

Offline W8LV

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #72 on: January 05, 2015, 07:18:15 am »
Boilers explode. Nuclear cores melt. A failing wind turbine? Still less catastrophic. Curtiss Wright determined, MANY years ago, that a.three blade design for aircraft is much, much more stable than a two pitch design. The two blade ones were tearing themselves right out of.their test stands, this on the eve of jet engines. I suppose you can feather the blades parallel with high storm winds. But when that plant turns tail, wow, that's a lot of gyroscopic action going on there. And all of that weight,  and servicing,  way, way up in the air.
Solar? No moving parts. None. Unless you are swinging around arrays, reflectors, concentrating mirrors and such. Quiet. But how to store any if these?  Big assed batteries, invert. Why not simply pump and store some water somewhere uphill, bring it back down through a water turbine when no wind (or no sun)? Or convert the water to hydrogen, store and burn in turbine. Or electrochemical a la fuel cell. Is anyone doing anything along these lines I wonder. I think any generation of energy has risks. I am still quite attracted to Nuclear...no carbon emissions, a lot of energy constant and still the place at the end of the day where I'd Bet the rent. Fifth Generation a la Thorium, and keep working towards fusion.Lock up a bunch of Scientists out in some remote location,  and let them have some chalk, a blackboard, and let them bang a few erasers around until they get it right.
Fusion is the Holy Grail. Containing it with magnetic fields as they are trying? Magnetic fields break down with heat... getting that "floating" in mid air and into a steady state? How can that EVER be stable?  The SUN isn't even stable in that state! There MUST be a better way.
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Offline TerraHertz

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #73 on: January 05, 2015, 01:07:40 pm »
It's surprising to see 6 pages in a thread about wind turbines, and so far not one mention of the terms EROEI or EPR.  Energy Return On Energy Invested, aka Energy Profit Ratio.
This is the fundamental measure of worth for all energy sources, and much more important than cost of installation, or subsidies in dollars.

A simple measure: how much energy does a society as a whole have to invest in making that energy source available for final use, compared to how much of that energy actually becomes available for final use? This has nothing to do with dollars or economics, it's a question of basic thermodynamics - does the energy source return a worthwhile energy profit? It the ratio is below zero, obviously it's unworkable. Slightly more surprising is that ratios below about 10 to 15 are also unworkable, as they require too large a proportion of total social structure be dedicated to maintenance of the energy extraction infrastructure.

Iirc, in the early days of the industrial revolution (coal powered) coal had an EROEI of around 20. Only just good enough. (It's listed at 80 in refs I see on the net now - presumably modern mining methods.)

In the early days of oil, oil's EPR was over 150. Easily extracted, high grade crude, near to refineries and final use locations. Now oil's EPR is below 50 and falling fast, due to exhaustion of all easy resources, leaving mostly only difficult fields. Deep water, shale oil, tar sands, very deep wells, high sulfur content, long distance transport, etc.  We'll never 'run out' of oil, it's just that oil's EPR will keep falling till eventually it's not thermodynamically feasible as an energy source.

Solar electric... sigh... typical silicon panels take more energy to produce, than the panel will return in 15 years of operation. Supposedly the panels last longer than that. And designs get better, but then maybe operating lifespan gets shorter too, with cheaper production.

Nuclear (fission) is really terrible. For a long time no one tried to work out the total lifespan energy cost of nuclear plants, including all the infrastructure required to build and operate a plant, all the security apparatus for keeping the fuel safe, the cost of decommissioning plants once the pressure vessel is too embrittled to function safely, and worst of all, the costs of maintaining secure containment of the high level wastes for thousands of years after.
But it turns out, that all fission power systems lifetime energy costs probably exceed their total energy production. That is, they are net losses, energy-wise. They only seem dollar-profitable in the short term, while an oil-based economy is used to support the required infrastructure, and one ignores the long term waste storage costs.
This is why for instance, no one wants to buy the British aging nuclear plants. Because the decommissioning costs begin to loom scarily.

All that's quite apart from the risks of nuclear power.  Most people seem to have some difficulty comprehending that nuclear risks are different in kind from all other industrial risks. An explosion, oil spill, bridge collapse, plane crash, etc are all short term disasters, with no consequences beyond a few years, or maybe a few decades for major oil spills. But nuclear accidents risk planet-wide epigenetic permanent disaster, and radiological contamination lasting for hundreds, thousands and even with some isotopes MILLIONS of years. Life on Earth evolved once Earth's primordial radiation level decayed mostly away. Nuke accident cascades absolutely could reverse that state, and return Earth to a lifeless condition effectively forever.

Then ANOTHER different-in-kind aspect to fission plant risk, is that natural disasters do happen. Tsunamis, earthquakes, and the ones we forget because there have been none SO FAR during our mere 200 years of industrial civilization - major asteroid strikes. One major impact in an ocean, and every nuke plant on bordering coastlines is smashed. Or say, if Yellowstone supervolcano blows. What would have been a human/ecological disaster recoverable in maybe 100 years, gets turned by smashed nuke plants into a planet dead for thousands/millions of years. Especially since in that scenario ALL the other nuke plants and waste sites would also eventually be weathered till they leaked.

Fission power is something only retards, lunatics and the extremely ignorant can seriously suggest. If Chernobyl wasn't enough of a lesson in practical reality, surely since Fukushima and that ongoing radiological disaster, 'ignorant' is no longer a viable excuse. The sooner existing plants worldwide are shut down the better - but that still leaves the waste to be secured. Considering it has to be secured for far longer than our industrial civilization has existed yet, it has to be secured 'effectively forever'. This is not going to be easy.

In the overall scale of humankind's urgent need for some new energy source, wind power is not very significant. Even so, the first question is, what is the EROEI? The figure most commonly given for wind power seems to be around 18.

But I wonder what failure rate was included in that calculation? Also whether it took into account the amount of power wind turbines *draw* from the grid when not generating, to maintain their heading, pitch, de-ice, etc?


A few refs
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_returned_on_energy_invested
http://energytransition.de/2014/09/renewables-ko-by-eroi/

http://www.energybulletin.net/node/52124
What is the Minimum EROI that a Sustainable Society Must Have?

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2893708/New-wind-turbine-farce-power-National-Grid-NOT-generating-electricity.html
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Offline zapta

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Re: Wind turbine destruction
« Reply #74 on: January 05, 2015, 05:05:32 pm »
It's surprising to see 6 pages in a thread about wind turbines, and so far not one mention of the terms EROEI or EPR.  Energy Return On Energy Invested, aka Energy Profit Ratio.
This is the fundamental measure of worth for all energy sources, and much more important than cost of installation, or subsidies in dollars.

I would love to have a magic black box that gives me 1.1 watt of electricity for every watt of electricity I feed in.

It the ratio is below zero, obviously it's unworkable.

Can you give an example of a contraption with negative energy output/input ratio?

Fission power is something only retards, lunatics and the extremely ignorant can seriously suggest.

Isn't this the technology that provides 75% of France's electricity? Are they retards, lunatic or extremely ignorant?
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