Common sense isn't.
As we wait for TVA's
announcement page to be updated with fourth quarter 2001
results, we can ponder the weather data from the last few days of
the year. As luck would have it, after a string of very windy days,
the old year went out, and the new year came in, with a whimper (or
low winds). Below about 4 meters/second (about 9 mph) the wind
turbines can produce no power.
Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on your perspective, the temperature was also quite low during this time of low wind. Wind turbines can produce more power with lower temperature, denser air. So, in a way the wind turbines like cold and windy weather best, unlike most people. The dense, cold air on the mountain was not being taken advantage of to make power at a time when power was needed for heating. In fact, we can be sure that the turbines themselves were consuming power to keep the precious components warm.
You may explore the effect of varying temperature and humidity on the power produced by the turbines, using my TVA Buffalo Mountain wind power calculator. Of course, variations in temperature or humidity don't make much difference if the wind isn't blowing.
NOAA for the
Previous Bottom Line Reports:
|Quote of the moment|
|All experience teaches that, whenever there is a great national establishment, employing large numbers of officials, the public must be reconciled to support many incompetent men; for such is the favoritism and nepotism always prevailing in the purlieus of these establishments, that some incompetent persons are always admitted, to the exclusion of many of the worthy.|
|~ Herman Melville (18191891), U.S. author. White-Jacket (1850), ch. 27, The Writings of Herman Melville, vol. 5, eds. Harrison Hayford, Hershel Parker, and G. Thomas Tanselle (1969). ~|
Common sense isn't.
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I last touched this page on Saturday, 2007-11-17 at 05:09:06 UTC.