March 11, 2010


This is a neat idea:

My only question is what does this have to do with wind energy? If you're converting the wind energy to electricity, then using electricity to run compressors, why does it matter what the electrical source is? This could be used to "store" any type of electrical energy. The real question is how efficient is the process? Would it be more efficient to use mechanical energy to run the compressors instead of electrical energy? Have the windmills turn the compressors directly?
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1 comment:

  1. The idea is to use the electricity generated by the windmills to run compressors during "off-peak" hours when everybody is asleep and wind is abundant. When everyone is up and consuming electricity, the wind may not be blowing as hard or not at all. When this is the case, the compressed air can be tapped to run the conventional generators. This way, the windmills are built and configured to do one thing, generate electricity. Some supplemental facts are:
    1. wind generation is highly variable and therefore relatively unreliable.
    2. The cost for installing wind turbines and their associated infrastructure (collection facilities) has to be subsidized to make it economically viable for the producers/investors to make money. Otherwise, they would never build it.
    3. Wind energy is subject to highly variable pricing fluctuations because it is variable and cannot be purchased ahead of time. If I own a gas, coal, nuclear or other solid fuel unit, I can plan and produce power on demand, thereby allowing some price structuring.
    4. I really like your Koi pond skimmer idea. That's how I found this blog.

    I live in Texas, which has a deregulated electrical grid. Free market gone awry in many cases. If you do a little research on, you can plainly see some of the facts I have quoted here. In fact, one day a few weeks ago, I calculated that wind was contributing 0.07% of the current demand on the grid. Not something I would put my money into.

    Texas Tim