Wind energy, like solar energy is a free renewable power source that will never run out. The South African climate is ideally suited to the production of wind energy and this has sparked new interest in investing in green energy from various government stakeholders.
Generating Power from Wind
Wind power is one of the fastest growing forms of sustainable energy in the world. A wind turbine operates on a simple principle. The power of the wind is used to turn the turbines propeller-like blades. This in in turn is connected to a rotor, which spins a generator, which then is used to produce electricity.
The amount of energy that can be produced is dependant on the speed of the wind. The higher the speed of the wind, the more power the turbine is able to produce.
The Benefits of Hybrid Systems – renewable energy
Because the peak operating times for wind power systems occur at different times of the day and year, hybrid systems are more likely to produce more power than a single system.
Hybrid systems combine multiple energy sources to deliver non-intermittent electrical power that optimises energy production over the course of a day / night cycle.
A wind power farm can only be feasibly constructed in an area that has strong and steady winds all year round. In South Africa, the Western Cape is an ideal place for the location of a turbine farm.
The Use of Wind Farms in South Africa
The South African Wind Energy Programme (SAWEP) was instrumental in motivating the construction of wind farms in the Western Cape. In line with this mandate, the South African government is investing more and more in renewable energy resources across the country in line with its objective with supplying the nation with electricity.
Given that the majority of South Africa’s population has limited or no access to the National Power Grid, wind energy is a viable solution. South Africa’s primary electricity supplier is also struggling to cater to the current demand.
There have also been further delays in additional power stations coming on line. Renewable energy sources like solar and wind power, will relieve pressure on the National Grid and simultaneously help reduce the countries carbon footprint.
Wind farms require a large amount of space away from the city and to maximise on electrical output hybrid systems can be installed that generate power from both the sun and the wind.