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Dark down under - Josh 382

In the news this week:

A dramatic, sudden loss of wind power generation was the root cause of South Australia’s state wide blackout last week.

Read about it at The Global Warming Policy Forum

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Reader Comments (58)

I do not buy the story, it is far too simplistic.
I do not have Oz electricity and fuel inputs at hand but I guess we have seen a increased base load coal regime now that gas prices are higher.
This is of course not suitable when used in conjunction with diffuse and irratic renewables causing a breakdown somewhere down the line.

Anyhow attempting to light up the universe with something less then colliding neutron stars is quite pointless and wasteful.
Nothing to be proud of really.
For all it faults North Korea seems to be optimising energy consumption given it circumstances. ( excluded from world trade)
I suspect North Korea is another globalist experiment.
A sort of control.

Oct 7, 2016 at 12:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

Russell. I've lived and worked in South Korea through all of their seasons and know for sure there is bugger-all wind there, particularly in winter when a high pressure calm arrives and the temperatures are around -6C.

Oct 7, 2016 at 9:39 PM | Unregistered Commenterssat

I decided to do some analysis of the SA wind fleet's likely behaviour by adapting the analysis technique I used for the UK and Europe's fleets. This is described in one of the papers published at Scientific Alliance, and uses aviation METARs as a source of wind speed and gust speed data. For the period 27-30 September I got time-coincident, hourly data (half-hourly for Adelaide) for six sites, the only ones submitting METARS in SA. I assumed mixed wind fleets at these localities, comprising Siemens, Vestas and Enercon windmills. These have a variety of power cut-out speeds.

Whether or not to blame transmission towers or windmill cut outs seems, at the start of any investigation, to be senseless. Windmills cut out between 25 and 28 m/S wind speed, about 60 mph. No pylon should collapse at that speed. And we've already seen that up to the time of the blackout the wind mills were generating, albeit with large output swings.

Back to my study, it is quite obvious that each location suffered windmill cutouts, in some cases more than one, on the 28th and 29th. The summed output of these wind farms was chaotic. I'm quite sure that a grid of SA's low system inertia would almost certainly trip due to instability. The pylon collapses simply put the whole system out of its misery.

Should we be worried? Well, Scotland and Eire are both in much the same position as SA so they certainly should be.

Oct 8, 2016 at 1:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterCapell

Ssat opines:"I've lived and worked in South Korea through all of their seasons and know for sure there is bugger-all wind there,"

He evidently hasn't been to windward - the uplands all along the eastern shore shore boast an average wind speed in excess of 25 KPH -

Oct 9, 2016 at 8:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterRussell

vvussell, is there no wind to leeward in South Korea?

Oct 9, 2016 at 10:34 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Windward is where windmills spin fast.

Leeward is where you catch the slow boat to Chna

Haven't you read Tiny The Turbine ?

Oct 11, 2016 at 4:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterRussell

Russel, they've given up on persuading the adults.

Oct 11, 2016 at 5:52 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhil Clarke

vvussell & Phil Clarke, perhaps you ought to get a slow boat to North Korea, and advise them on powering up their economy with wind, before they destroy the rest of the world with nuclear.

Alternatively, you may find the backward economic lifestyle meets all your needs

Oct 11, 2016 at 11:40 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

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