Skip to comments.Loss of wind causes Texas power grid emergency
Posted on 02/27/2008 5:19:12 PM PST by Sub-Driver
Loss of wind causes Texas power grid emergency Wed Feb 27, 2008 8:11pm EST
HOUSTON (Reuters) - A drop in wind generation late on Tuesday, coupled with colder weather, triggered an electric emergency that caused the Texas grid operator to cut service to some large customers, the grid agency said on Wednesday.
Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) said a decline in wind energy production in west Texas occurred at the same time evening electric demand was building as colder temperatures moved into the state.
The grid operator went directly to the second stage of an emergency plan at 6:41 PM CST (0041 GMT), ERCOT said in a statement.
System operators curtailed power to interruptible customers to shave 1,100 megawatts of demand within 10 minutes, ERCOT said. Interruptible customers are generally large industrial customers who are paid to reduce power use when emergencies occur.
No other customers lost power during the emergency, ERCOT said. Interruptible customers were restored in about 90 minutes and the emergency was over in three hours.
ERCOT said the grid's frequency dropped suddenly when wind production fell from more than 1,700 megawatts, before the event, to 300 MW when the emergency was declared.
In addition, ERCOT said multiple power suppliers fell below the amount of power they were scheduled to produce on Tuesday. That, coupled with the loss of wind generated in West Texas, created problems moving power to the west from North Texas.
(Excerpt) Read more at reuters.com ...
The wind stops and your power goes out????
See when your power is out, your meter does not turn, there is your savings!
It evaporates pretty fast from a dewar. Most of what we get is compressed, and sometimes that’s absorbed into a metal sponge of some sort.
The liquid is much colder than nitrogen, about 20K, and it’s much less dense, a liter of LH2 weighs only 70 grams, where water weighs 1000 grams.
It’s pretty flammable, naturally.
So you want to take an incredibly ineffective inefficient means of generating politically correct energy store it, in very low energy density liquid hydrogen (invisible flame front, embrittles metals, spontaneously detonates in liquid state), and then burn it to convert it back to energy.
What do you think the transfer efficiency from Wind=>propeller=>generator=>hydrogen=>combustion=>electricity is? I'm betting you get less than 5% of your original wind energy out of that scheme. And incidentally the wind energy we are talking about is an incredibly diffuse source of energy in the first place.
Americans are becoming so damn stupid they deserve to be poor.
Yes, it has a nasty tendency to condense liquid oxygen which makes sparks.....
No, I didn’t know that about high winds shutting down the turbines, prior to learning it here, today. Doesn’t make sense, but after pondering it for a minute or two, I guess it does.
Spent a lot of growing-up years in Oklahoma, where windmills stood sentinel at every farmhouse and they seemed to be running more often than not, when I was driving past them.
As it happens, the days the TX windfarm went down were also the days that same weather front was passing thru here in my town in far SE TX and we had very gusty winds, which is unusual for here.
Its not just a question of shutdown due to possible high wind speed damage, its a question of efficiency.
Here is a typical efficiency curve for a 3 blade windmill.
When the wind energy charlatans quote you power numbers they quote peak not average power. In reality the wind usually isn't blowing at the ideal velocity.
In isolated locations where the cost to run a grid connection is high, locally generated energy makes sense, even if it is intermittent. Pumping water from a well into a cistern, for example.
Rural electrification changed things. My grandfather lived on a farm in rural NJ in the early 1900s and they had a windmill for pumping water. He was always worried about running out of water from the cistern when there were extended periods when the wind didn't blow. When rural electrification came in the first thing he did was tear down his windmill. He had a monthly utility bill to pay, but never worried again about lacking water.
Hydrogen liquid is not low energy density, it stores about 140 megajoules per kilo. That’s pretty good storage. I bet you could launch someone to the Moon with that kind of oomph!
I’m not considering political correctness, just using engineering, or I’d bring up the Horrible Number Of Birds that get Shredded By Wind Turbines, let alone the longterm effects of sapping atmospheric kinetic energy directly to wasteful human energy! Might accelerate Global Climate Change donchano.
Yes, H2 is dangerous to work with, but not impossibly so, we’ve built an entire society around the poisonous and explosive gasoline. Hydrogen does not spontaneously ignite, it takes an ignition source. The LEL-UEL is broader than, say, propane but the problems are similar.
I’m not sure about the overall efficiency- I think it may be higher. Wind turbines these days extract a lot of kinetic energy from moving air, and electrical generators are way over 80%. Since the turbine does not “use anything up” other than kinetic energy, the first-step efficiency is not much of an issue. Later stages like kinetic-to-electric are important as you point out. The electrolysis is governed purely by the thermodynamics, and runs between 80-95%, the loss showing up as heat and delta-S. You lose delta-S on recovery, too, so the overall efficiency is probably between 30-55%, better than for petroleum run through an IC engine.
Wind energy is not inefficient, just variable.
Hey, you don’t like wind. I understand that, fine by me.
“Yes, it has a nasty tendency to condense liquid oxygen”
lol I’ve taken a Coke can (if you prefer RC Cola go for it) and filled it with LN2, and set it on steel wool. Little drops of LOX form amid the frost and drip down. Light a match near the steel wool, and WHOOSH, pretty sparks! and a bright yellow-white flame.
Helium from a cryo transfer line condenses LOX too, except that you can make it solid as well, solid air, which with a little kerosene, um, never mind...
professional driver on a closed course, don’t try this at home.
I love that story! I worked for the REA co-op in OK (OAEC) for some years as a consultant and I know I would’ve loved being among those first Rural Electrification workers who went to the farms and signed people up, then watched as the plant switches were turned on across the countryside over the years.
Your REA rep was like a county extension agent - had to have answers for all kinds of farm living questions - my favorite area of expertise would have been in recipes, canning, preserving, cooking and so forth. I just think it would’ve been a fun job and a friendly way to make a living.
Its light but its also bulky. 3.4X lower energy density per volume than gasoline.
Volume is a concern when you are worried about hydrogen embrittlement of the container.
“No, I didnt know that about high winds shutting down the turbines, prior to learning it here, today.”
The classic old windmill, with the wooden blades, had a “tail” that was part of the wind speed regulator. In low speed wind the tail was straight back so the blades faced the wind. As the blade speed went up, gears moved the tail to the side, so that the blades would face the wind more and more edge-on, it was a governor that kept the windmill from ripping itself apart and kept the system near the peak in the power curve.
The modern 30 foot turbines must do something similar, but I don’t know what.
Sometimes leaks ignite, and people don’t know why, there mayb e external causes or not- that’s my distillation of the abstract.
Hydrogen is a flammable gas, like propane and LNG.
A serious power plant is 1000 MW. Windmills have to be spaced out.
To build a 1000 MW worth of windmill capacity you need hundreds of thousands of acres of land i.e. hundreds of square miles and tens of thousands of windmill.
AND WHEN YOU ARE DONE YOU STILL NEED TO BUILD A REAL POWER PLANT TO BACK IT UP.
This is idiocy. In 20 years from now China will have cheap, safe, reliable power and Americans will poor and sitting in the dark.
Energy is the lifeblood of civilization and the alternative energy BS artists are destroying our nation. Even the Chinese "Communists" have better sense than this.
Cape Wind is to be 130 windmills, generating 400 MW of power, and the turbines are spaced 900 yards apart (a staggered linear array 40 miles long I think). Scale this up by three to get 1000 MW, roughly.
My proposal would be to complicate things further by using the intermittent, unreliable wind to generate H2 as a form of energy storage, rather than putting the power online, except perhaps for low load periods.
Ten percent of grid power? Never, as a continuous supply. As a peak % for a time, we may get to 10%. Wind is better off grid.
As stored power, in H2 or some other storage medium, wind can add to the total available, maybe 5%, I don’t have everything I need to model it.
An interesting page, wind is pretty paltry in terms of the total.
I’d prefer more investment in nuclear, but I don’t want to ignore wind totally.
Another fraudulent lie.
Try 170 MW of expected *average* power not the peak number.
What an incredible waste of resources for an unreliable power supply.
Yes, it’s too unreliable to be put on the grid.