United States

United States

Research project reports capacity factors

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A three turbine project near Algona, Iowa, has reported capacity factors of over 40% for the first four months of operation, producing 2.6 million kWh. The project, part of the Turbine Verification Program (TVP) run by the Department of Energy with the US utility industry's Electric Power Research Institute, is made up of the three Zond Z-750 turbines. It began commercial operation in December 1998 as a partnership with seven municipal utilities in Iowa, with most of the power going to Cedar Falls Utilities. The performance of other TVP projects is also reported in the inaugural issue of the "TVP News Bulletin." In Searsburg, Vermont, a TVP project consisting of 11 Zond Z-40 machines had capacity factors in the last quarter ranging from 29% to 41%, with average wind speeds of almost 9 m/s. In Springview, Nebraska, two Zond Z-750 turbines began full operation in late January, after telephone interference problems were solved. They performed similarly to the Iowa TVP turbines in February and March. In Glenmore, Wisconsin, a supposedly "low wind speed" project in fact had wind speeds comparable to the Iowa and Nebraska sites, averaging 7.7 m/s. The two Tacke 600e turbines produced only 715,000 kWh, however, logging a capacity factor of 28%. The Turbine Verification Program aims to "evaluate prototype advanced wind turbines at several sites developed by US electric utility companies."

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