Large-scale wind energy slows down winds and reduces turbine efficiencies

We knew this was likely – but good to see more research on this important issue which quantifies the effect as being a further 20% reduction over the already dire performance due to well known capacity factors.

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Welsh windfarm [image credit: PA / BBC] Welsh windfarm [image credit: PA / BBC]
If this research is correct, large windfarms could be losing a huge part of their potential output due to inadequate spacing, as Phys.org reports. Quote: “We found these dramatic effects at turbine spacings commonly used in present-day wind farms on land.”

Wind energy has been remarkably successful in providing an increasing share of cheap renewable energy. But can this trend continue to supply more and more renewable energy for decades to come?

A new study published by scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry in Jena, Germany, lowers the expectations of wind energy when used at large scales.

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