Popadija plant economics revealed

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Estimated annual income from the planned 45 MW Popadija wind farm near Negotin in eastern Serbia, announced in December, will be just over EUR 10 million based on an electricity price of EUR 0.09/kWh, according to a feasibility study by the energy efficiency agency. The study, launched in 2007, expects the plant's 15, 3 MW turbines to turn at full capacity for an equivalent of 2505 hours a year, giving it a capacity factor of 28.6%. Project construction will cost EUR 1400 a kilowatt, making payback of the investment sum possible within eight years, says the agency. The study examined the economics of using a Gamesa 2 MW turbine, an Ecotècnia 2 MW turbine or a Vestas 3 MW machine. It determined the Vestas model was best suited. No turbine has been chosen yet. The study is part of a government project aimed at introducing renewable energy and is backed by a EUR 234,000 grant from the Spanish government. Spanish engineering firm NIP was among several other research collaborators. The Serbian government hopes the research will attract investment to the wind farm, close to the borders with Romania and Bulgaria. It plans to connect the plant to the power grid with a 110 kV transmission line.

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