With the Production Tax Credit subject to the whims of a fickle Congress, U.S. windpower remains in an ongoing state of uncertainty. Will the United States embrace the technology?
Taming the Wind
Modern approaches to system operations and forecasting make the most of variable energy sources.
level out fluctuations even when wind energy produces 50 percent or more of total generation. 3 “In five or 10 years, when plug-in hybrids are expected to make a big play, we’ll also see a high level of wind integration,” Gramlich says. “The batteries will be paid for to meet transportation needs, and also will be available to provide ancillary power and services to the grid. That will make a great connection with wind energy.”
In the meantime, utilities are benefiting from the experience of using windpower on their systems. That experience is contributing to greater understanding of the technical and operational solutions needed to tame the wind—optimize its potential to provide reliable green energy.
1. “Transmission Issues Associated with Renewable Energy in Texas: Informal White Paper for the Texas Legislature,” ERCOT, March, 2005.
2. Archer, Christina L. and Jacobson, Mark Z., “Supplying Baseload Power and Reducing Transmission Requirements by Interconnecting Wind Farms,” Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatolog y, November, 2007.
3. Kempton, W. and Dahnju, A., “Electric Vehicles with V2G: Storage for Large-Scale Wind Power,” Windtech International , March, 2006.