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United States

Up to 12TWh a year lost to downtime

UNITED STATES: A report into the US wind fleet by predictive analytics firm Uptake has found approximately 12TWh of wind energy is lost to downtime each year.

Uptake is using its predictive software on Berkshire Hathaway Energy's US wind fleet
Uptake is using its predictive software on Berkshire Hathaway Energy's US wind fleet

Uptake's figures suggests turbines in the US are available roughly 94% of the time. This compares favourably with the country's nuclear fleet, which had an energy availability factor of 92% between 2014 and 2016, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

However, Uptake argues that for every extra 1% availability obtained in the wind fleet, a further 2.4TWh of energy can be generated.

The analytics firm believes 99% availability is possible, unsurprisingly "by using predictive analytics software to identify critical maintenance issues before they happen and taking proactive actions", and "greater operational experience that yield best practice in operation and maintenance procedures".

Sue Tierney, senior advisor at the Analysis Group, Uptake advisor and former assistant policy secretary at the US Department of Energy, said: "The findings from Uptake's report underscore there is a huge opportunity for the current wind fleet to produce more energy.

"If the wind power industry uses data to improve operations and stop problems before they start, it will be better positioned to stay competitive in today's evolving energy markets," Tierney added.

In March 2017, Uptake was hired by Berkshire Hathaway Energy to use its predictive analysis system on the energy firm's 5GW wind fleet.

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