Wind power in Germany

Wind power in Germany

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In 2010, the installed capacity of wind power in Germany was 27.2 GW
GW
-Science and technology:* .gw, the Internet top-level domain of Guinea-Bissau* Gateway * GateWorld* The symbol for GigaWatt, a unit for measuring electric power, equal to 109 watts* Global warming...

. Wind power currently produces about seven percent of Germany’s total electrical power. More than 21,607 wind turbines are located in the German federal area and the country has plans to build more wind turbines. As of 2011, Germany's federal government is working on a new plan for increasing renewable energy commercialization
Renewable energy commercialization
Renewable energy commercialization involves the deployment of three generations of renewable energy technologies dating back more than 100 years. First-generation technologies, which are already mature and economically competitive, include biomass, hydroelectricity, geothermal power and heat...

, with a particular focus on offshore wind farms.

Overview


As of 2010, Wind power in Germany provides over 96,100 people with jobs and German wind energy systems are also exported. The Fuhrländer Wind Turbine Laasow
Fuhrländer Wind Turbine Laasow
Fuhrländer Wind Turbine Laasow is a wind turbine, built in 2006 near the village of Laasow, Brandenburg, Germany. It consists of a 160 metre lattice tower, which carries a rotor 90 metres in diameter. It is the tallest wind turbine in the world...

, built in 2006 near the village of Laasow, Brandenburg, is the tallest wind turbine in the world. Also most other of the tallest wind turbines in the world are situated in Germany, see List of wind turbines.

At Germany, there are also most of the most powerful wind turbines in the world, the Enercon E-126
Enercon E-126
The Enercon E-126 is the largest wind turbine model build to date, manufactured by the German wind turbine producer Enercon. With a hub height of , rotor diameter of and a total height of , this large model can generate up to of power per turbine. The nameplate capacity was changed from to ...

.

However, the economics of wind power in Germany are under close scrutiny and there are other issues which deserve consideration. These include the effect of wind turbines on the landscape, the effect on the bird population, and the effect on the tourist industry.

Repowering


Repowering
Repowering
Repowering is the process of replacing older power stations with newer ones that either have a greater nameplate capacity or more efficiency which results in a net increase of power generated.-Wind power:...

, the replacement of first-generation wind turbines with modern multi-megawatt machines, is occurring in Germany. Modern turbines make better use of available wind energy and so more wind power can come from the same area of land. Modern turbines also offer much better grid integration since they use a connection method similar to conventional power plants.

Offshore wind power


Offshore wind energy also has great potential in Germany. Wind speed at sea is 70 to 100% higher than onshore and much more constant. A new generation of 5 MW or larger wind turbines which are capable of making full use of the potential of wind power at sea has already been developed and prototypes are available. This makes it possible to operate offshore wind farms in a cost-effective way once the usual initial difficulties of new technologies have been overcome.

On July 15 of 2009, the first offshore German windturbine completed construction. This turbine is the first of a total of 12 wind turbines for the alpha ventus
Alpha ventus
Alpha ventus is Germany's first offshore wind farm. It is situated in the North Sea north of the island of Borkum.-History:...

 offshore wind farm in the North Sea.

Following the 2011 Japanese nuclear accidents
2011 Japanese nuclear accidents
This is a list of articles describing aspects of the nuclear shut-downs, failures, and nuclear meltdowns triggered by the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami.-Fukushima nuclear power plants:* Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant...

, Germany's federal government is working on a new plan for increasing renewable energy commercialization
Renewable energy commercialization
Renewable energy commercialization involves the deployment of three generations of renewable energy technologies dating back more than 100 years. First-generation technologies, which are already mature and economically competitive, include biomass, hydroelectricity, geothermal power and heat...

, with a particular focus on offshore wind farms. Under the plan large wind turbine
Wind turbine
A wind turbine is a device that converts kinetic energy from the wind into mechanical energy. If the mechanical energy is used to produce electricity, the device may be called a wind generator or wind charger. If the mechanical energy is used to drive machinery, such as for grinding grain or...

s will be erected far away from the coastlines, where the wind blows more consistently than it does on land, and where the enormous turbines won't bother the inhabitants. The plan aims to decrease Germany's dependence on energy derived from coal and nuclear power plants.

Statistics



Increases in installed wind power capacity and generation in recent years is shown in the table below:
Year19901991199219931994199519961997199819992000
Installed Capacity (MW) 55 106 174 326 618 1,121 1,549 2,080 2,877 4,439 6,097
Generation (GW·h) 71 100 275 600 909 1,500 2,032 2,966 4,489 5,528 7,550
% of total electricity
consumption
0.3 0.4 0.5 0.8 1.0 1.3
Year20002001200220032004200520062007200820092010
Installed Capacity (MW) 6,097 8,750 11,989 14,604 16,623 18,390 20,579 22,194 23,836 25,716 27,204
Generation (GW·h) 7,550 10,509 15,786 18,713 25,509 27,229 30,710 39,713 40,574 38,639 36,500
% of total electricity
consumption
1.3 1.8 2.7 3.1 4.2 4.4 5.0 6.4 6.6 6.7 6.0

States



In Saxony-Anhalt
Saxony-Anhalt
Saxony-Anhalt is a landlocked state of Germany. Its capital is Magdeburg and it is surrounded by the German states of Lower Saxony, Brandenburg, Saxony, and Thuringia.Saxony-Anhalt covers an area of...

 52.1 % of electricity was produced with wind power in 2010.

Share of the potential annual energy yield of the net electrical energy consumption in 2010:
State No. Turbines Installed Capacity
[MW]
Share in the net electrical energy
consumption [%]
 Saxony-Anhalt 2,304 3,509.16 52.1
 Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania 1,356 1,549.10 45.4
 Schleswig-Holstein 2,675 3,014.98 44.1
 Brandenburg 2,952 4,400.78 42.8
 Lower Saxony 5,365 6,664.24 25.1
 Thuringia 581 754.18 12.3
 Rhineland-Palatinate 1,086 1,421.43 8.6
 Kingdom of Saxony 821 943.27 8.5
 Bremen (state) 67 120.84 4.1
 North Rhine-Westphalia 2,820 2,928.11 4.0
 Hesse 613 587.77 2.5
 Saarland 80 111.40 2.4
 Kingdom of Bavaria 412 521.38 1.0
 Baden-Württemberg 368 467.08 0.9
 Hamburg 61 50.68 0.6
 Berlin 1 2.00 0.0
offshore North Sea
North Sea
In the southwest, beyond the Straits of Dover, the North Sea becomes the English Channel connecting to the Atlantic Ocean. In the east, it connects to the Baltic Sea via the Skagerrak and Kattegat, narrow straits that separate Denmark from Norway and Sweden respectively...

 
24 120.00
offshore Baltic Sea
Baltic Sea
The Baltic Sea is a brackish mediterranean sea located in Northern Europe, from 53°N to 66°N latitude and from 20°E to 26°E longitude. It is bounded by the Scandinavian Peninsula, the mainland of Europe, and the Danish islands. It drains into the Kattegat by way of the Øresund, the Great Belt and...

 
21 48.30
Germany Total 21,607 27,214.70 9.4

See also



  • List of wind turbines in Germany
  • Renewable energy in Germany
    Renewable energy in Germany
    The share of electricity produced from renewable energy in Germany has increased from 6.3 percent of the national total in 2000 to over 20 percent in the first half of 2011. In 2010, investments totaling 26 billion euros were made in Germany’s renewable energies sector...


External links