07 March 2009

Delta / Zeeland trial - results update March 2009

The latest results have come in from the Delta / Zeeland trial of small wind turbines in the Netherlands. They do not normally release public results at one month intervals so I expect it is because they want to announce some news.

Their email gives the following information:

1. The Renewable Device Swift turbine was removed on 31 January 2009 and will be replaced by a Raum 1.3.

2. The Raum 1.3 turbine has been installed but the inverter has not been installed yet. Installation is expected to be completed in mid April 2009.

3. The Turby has had a fault during all of February 2009.

Looking at the data it seems to support all the trends that were in place, i.e.:

- The vertical axis turbines are the worse performers.

- The Ampair, Fortis, and SWW Skystream are the best performers.

- The Zephyr AirDolphin is technically a good performer but commercially so expensive it is not commercially attractive. In fairness to Ampair I should point out that our installer has put an price on the Ampair that is unusually high so we too are labouring under an heavy economic burden.

The strongest wind month was January with an annual average of 4.4m/s. Some people are commenting that winds on this site are unusually low but I disagree as they are in fact typical of the 12m height wind speeds at most rural locations where substantial communities live. It is extremely unusual to find large groups of people living in winds of higher than this and recent work in the UK tends to support our observations (see the Warwick Wind Trials and the EST microwind trials).

Other comments I have heard are that there is wind shadowing occurring between turbines. There may be some truth in this as the turbines are on a line SSE-NNW and the average wind has come from almost dead S. So anyone is immediately downstream of the Skystream (the most efficient wind harvester and with a large diameter) coulfd reasonably raise this as an issue. There is obviously scope here for a quick undergraduate project to explore this issue further. I don't actually know the sequence of turbines in the line.

The results can be downloaded here:


As always those manufacturers who have had the courage to participate are to be commended. Doing stuff like this in public is difficult for small companies. Also the Delta / Zeeland trial organisers are doing a good job and showing that pretty basic but independent trials can yield very informative results for consumers.

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UK microgeneration tariff update - March 2009

There has been feedback from three utilities and I have updated the rate information and the calculation tool which can be down loaded below. I have not agreed with all their comments (suprise) but as before note that most of the people working in the microgeneration teams in the utilities are trying to do a good job with very little visible support from their organisations.

PDF version - information only:

Excel version - includes working calculator:

There has also been feedback from readers of this blog who have found it helpful and which was our aim. Here at Ampair we concentrate on design & manufacture of small wind turbines and small hydro turbines. The rest is over to our distributors / installers and the wider public who hopefully include a few of our clients.

More information and explanation is in our blog entry below:


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